WASHINGTON - New orders for manufactured goods rose $12.9 billion or 2.8% to $478.6 billion in July, the Commerce Department reported Friday.

The July increase followed an unrevised decline of 0.5% in June, and surpassed the median 1.8%  gain predicted by economists polled by Thomson Reuters. The increase was the largest since a 3.3% advance in July 2011.

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