New orders for manufactured durable goods fell 2.1%, or by $5.4 billion, in April, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The federal agency on Friday (May 24) released an advance report on manufacturers’ shipments, inventories and orders for April.
The decline in new orders, which has been down for two of the past three months, followed a 1.7% rise in March. Excluding transportation, new orders were flat. Excluding defense, new orders fell 2.5%. New orders of transportation equipment led the decline, falling 5.9%, or by $5.4 billion, to $85.4 billion, and they have declined in two of the past three months.
Shipments of manufactured durable goods fell 1.6%, or by $4 billion, to $253.3 billion and have declined in three of the past four months, including a 0.5% decrease in March. Transportation equipment led the decrease, declining 4.1%, or by $3.7 billion, to $85.8 billion, and has fallen the past four months.
Unfilled orders for manufactured durable goods decreased 0.1%, or by $700 million, to $1.18 trillion and has fallen in two of the past three months. The unfilled orders rose 0.1% in March. Transportation equipment led the decrease, down 0.1%, or by $400 million, to $810.6 billion, and has declined in two of the past three months.
Inventories of manufactured durable goods rose 0.4%, or by $1.8 billion, to $422.6 billion, and has risen in nine of the past 10 months, including a 0.3% rise in March. Transportation equipment led the rise, up 1.1%, or by $1.5 billion, to $136.1 billion and has been on the rise for nine out of the past 10 months.
Nondefense new orders for capital goods fell 5%, or by $3.9 billion, to $74 billion in April. Shipments fell 3%, or by $2.4 billion, to $75.9 billion. Unfilled orders decreased 0.3%, or by $2 billion, to $705.3 billion. Inventories rose 0.5%, or by $900 million, to $185.9 billion. Defense new orders for capital goods rose 4.8%, or by $700 million, to $14.7 billion. Shipments rose 2.6%, or by $300 million, to $12.8 billion. Unfilled orders increased 1.2%, or by $1.9 billion, to $159.2 billion. Inventories increased 0.6%, or by $100 million, to $23.4 billion.