Manufacturing activity in the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City's region "continued to expand at a solid pace and … firms remained optimistic about the future" in September, according to the bank's monthly manufacturing survey, released Thursday.
"Factories in the region reported another good month in September, with little impact overall from the Gulf Coast hurricanes," said Chad Wilkerson, vice president and economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.
The composite index grew to 17 in September from 16 in August, while the production index remained at 22, volume of shipments gained to 25 from 23, the volume of new orders index dropped to 10 from 25, and the backlog of orders index slid to 7 from 13. The new orders for exports index rose to 6 from 4 and the supplier delivery time index jumped to 22 from 10.
The number of employees index gained to 18 from 14, while the average employee workweek index dipped to 7 from 9. The prices received for finished product index rose to 13 from 8, while the prices paid for raw materials index grew to 24 from 21.
As for the inventories indexes, materials increased to 11 from 10, while the finished goods fell to negative 6 from positive 2.
In projections for six months from now, the composite index climbed to 26 from 23, and the production index remained at 38. The shipments stayed at 38, while new orders dropped to 27 from 39, and the backlog of orders index increased to 21 from 19. The new orders for exports index rose to 8 from 4, and the supplier delivery time index increased to 18 from 14.
The number of employees index was at 26, unchanged from last month, while the average employee workweek index gained to 7 from 1. The prices received for finished product index fell to 29 from 34, and the prices paid for raw materials remained at 39. The capital expenditures index was at 13, after a 18 reading the prior month.
As for the inventories indexes, materials soared to positive 19 from negative 2, while the finished goods index reversed to positive 9 from negative 6.
The Tenth Federal Reserve District includes Kansas, Colorado, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Wyoming, northern New Mexico and western Missouri.