U.S. Industrial Production Declines

Washington, Dhu-AlHijjah 13, 1437, September 15, 2016, SPA — U.S. industrial production fell more than expected in August, hurt partly by a sharp decline in utilities output, the government reported Thursday.
The Federal Reserve (Fed) said production at the country’s factories, mines, and utilities fell 0.4 percent last month after a 0.6 percent gain in July.
Manufacturing output—the biggest component of industrial production—fell 0.4 percent in August. Production at electric and natural-gas utilities fell 1.4 percent. But output at mines—which includes energy drilling—rose 1 percent.
With overall industrial production decreasing, the percentage of industrial capacity in use fell 0.4 percentage point in August to 75.5 percent, from 75.9 percent the previous month. The Fed considers industrial capacity use as a leading indicator in deciding how much further the economy can grow before sparking higher inflation.
The industrial sector had recently improved after declining for much of the last 18 months, but it has not overcome the negative effects of weak global demand, a strong U.S. dollar, and low oil prices.
–SPA
17:44 LOCAL TIME 14:44 GMT