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Economic Report: U.S. industrial output rises in April for 4th straight month


The numbers: Industrial production rose 1.1% in April, the Federal Reserve reported Tuesday. This is the fourth straight gain of 0.8% or greater.

The increase in April was above Wall Street expectations of a 0.5% gain, according to a survey by The Wall Street Journal.

Capacity utilization rose to 79% in April from 78.2% in the prior month. The capacity utilization rate reflects the limits to operating the nation’s factories, mines and utilities. 

Economists had forecast a 78.6% rate.

Key details: Manufacturing rose 0.8% in April, matching the gain in the prior month. Increases were widespread across sectors. 

Motor vehicles and parts output rose 3.9% after an 8.3% jump in the prior month. Excluding autos, total industrial output increased 0.9%.

Utilities output rose 2.4% in April after a 0.3% fall in the prior month.

Mining output, which includes oil and natural gas, rose 1.6% after a 1.9% gain in the prior month.

Big picture: Manufacturing has been a bright spot but there are new worries that moderating demand, broken supply chains and shortages may cause the sector to slow down. The New York Fed’s Empire State factory index fell into contractionary territory in May.

Market reaction: Stocks


opened higher on Tuesday on signs the consumer spending was holding up despite higher inflation.

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