U.S. Industrial Output Drops

Industrial Production

CBJ — Industrial production fell 0.6% in the U.S. last month, largely due to an 8.8% decline in the production of automobiles and components.

The U.S. Federal Reserve says that that the manufacturing component of the index dropped 0.9%, reversing a 0.8% increase in December.

Over the past year, factory production has increased about 3%. Manufacturing of wood products, computers, electrical equipment, apparel and chemicals also fell in January.

Economists say the decline suggests a cooling period at U.S. factories that could prompt a slower pace of growth this year compared to 2018. While job growth has been solid to this point, other sectors of the economy are showing signs for caution.

Overall industrial production is up 3.8% from a year ago.