The Philly Fed is out today with thei general business conditions index which beat expectations at 25.8 for February. New orders, at 24.5, are surging and unfilled orders, at 14.5, are piling up fast. Hiring is so far keeping up, at 25.2, but the acceleration in shipments is slowing, down nearly 15 points to what is, however, a still very active 15.5.
Price data are also strong with steady and very strong traction being shown for selling prices, where the index is at 23.9. And price expectations are jumping, both for selling prices six months from now and especially for input costs.
For more than a year, the Philly Fed sample has been reporting the hottest conditions of any regional manufacturing survey in results that did signal, though perhaps too far in advance, what is now an uplift underway in actual government data. Watch later this morning for the industrial production report where the manufacturing component has been surprisingly soft.
Like Empire State, slight slowing at a still a strong rate of growth was January’s result for the Philly Fed manufacturing index which is expected to hold steady in February at a consensus 21.0. Shipments, the workweek and employment have been climbing sharply and are raising questions over the sample’s capacity constraints.