WASHINGTON — New factory orders for manufactured goods increased 0.9% in September, the fifth increase in the last six months, the Commerce Department reported yesterday.

Orders excluding transportation rose 0.8% and durable goods increased 1.4%. Orders for machinery goods rose 7.9%, the largest increase since March 2008.

Economists expected factory orders to rise 0.8% in September, according to the median estimate provided by Thomson Reuters.

Unfilled orders fell 0.4% in September, a record 12th straight decline.

New orders declined 0.8% in August, unchanged from the initial report last month, as orders excluding transportation goods rose 0.3%, revised down from 0.4%.

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