Factory Orders Fell 4.7%, Biggest Drop in Over Six Years; Inventories Jump Again

New orders at U.S. factories fell 4.7% in October, the biggest fall in more than six years, while inventories rose, suggesting slowdown in the economy, according to data released by Commerce Department.

New orders for manufactured goods in October, down three of the last four months, decreased $19.3 billion or 4.7 percent to $390.3 billion. This was the largest decrease since July of 2000. 

Shipments, up two of the last three months, increased $0.4 billion or 0.1 percent to $389.9 billion. This followed a 4.2 percent September decrease. 

Unfilled orders, up seventeen of the last eighteen months, increased $8.2 billion or 1.2 percent to $666.5 billion. This was at the highest level since the series was first stated on a NAICS basis in 1992 and followed a 4.1 percent September increase. 

Inventories, up twelve of the last thirteen months, increased $1.8 billion or 0.4 percent to $481.1 billion. This followed a 0.6 percent September increase. The inventories-to-shipments ratio was 1.23, unchanged from September. 

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