“Manufacturing activity in the central Atlantic region continued to be depressed this month,” according to the monthly business activity survey conducted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.

The manufacturing index improved to negative 49 in January from negative 55.

Shipments inched up to negative 54 from negative 55, the Fed reported. Volume of new orders narrowed to negative 50 from negative 66, while the backlog of orders index improved to negative 41 from negative 59.

As for the outlook six months from now, the shipments index was 30, up from 27 last month, while the volume of new orders index rose to 34 from 27, and backlog of orders gained to 23 from 18.

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