U.S. Factory Production Up in April image

The gain in auto production helped the U.S. factory output increase in April.

In April output at factories, utilities and mines rose 1.1%, the most since December 2010. Factory output hit a low in June 2009, the month the recession ended, but rose 18.3% since then. The Institute for Supply Management declared manufacturing activity, production, new orders and a measure of hiring, all rose at the fastest pace in 10 months. The Federal Reserve Bank of New York declared a drop in April, but a gain in May with rising new orders and employment.

Due to the faster output at the factories in the States, employers have added 1 million jobs in the last five months. Manufacturing companies alone have added 167,000 jobs, almost 17% of the job gains. Factories are producing more goods since consumers are more confident and buy more. In the first three months of this year consumer spending increased at an annual rate of 2.9%, the fast since 2010. Last month retail sales were up with only 0.1%, contrary to the auto, electronics, furniture and appliances sales which rose. In the first quarter the economy was up 2.2%, lower than the 3% registered in October-December quarter.