Manufacturing activity in the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City’s region “declined at a slightly slower pace in March, and firms’ expectations for future activity improved somewhat over last month. Price indexes in the survey remained mostly negative,” according to the bank’s monthly manufacturing survey released yesterday.

The production index climbed to negative 21 in March from negative 24 in February, the volume of shipments index narrowed to negative 15 from negative 20, the volume of new orders index crept to negative 16 from negative 28, and the backlog of orders index increased to negative 32 from negative 35.

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