Friday, August 14, 2009
Industrial Production Up, But Not By Much
The Fed released its Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization report today, showing the first increase in production since December 2007 (other than a hurricane-related bump last October). Probable sign of a turnaround, yes, but overall production is down over 13 percent since last July. Consumer goods is least worst with a mere 7.2% drop. And capacity utilization (roughly: actual production divided by potential production), at 68.5%, is still just above its lowest level in the 45 years reported in the accompanying charts. We're in a deep hole, which will take some time to climb out of.