U.S. industrial outlook: Industrial activity strong in early 2013, spring lull


Daniel J. Meckstroth, Ph.D., vice president and chief economist
The superior growth in manufacturing production early this year was due to the strong growth in housing starts, auto sales and inventory rebuilding. When there is a large inventory build in one quarter, however, the gain tends to reverse in the next period. While part of the recent weakness is from inventory swing, the economic fundamentals in the second quarter are not strong. We expect an acceleration in the general economy and a rebound in manufacturing production in the second half of this year, but nothing suggests more than a return to modest to moderate growth. Economic Outlook

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