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Texas Manufacturing Strengthens in September, Says Dallas Fed Survey

For immediate release: September 29, 2014

DALLASTexas factory activity increased again in September, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas’ Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey.

Texas produces more than 11 percent of total manufactured goods in the United States, ranking second behind California in factory production.

The production index—a key measure of state manufacturing conditions—rose markedly from 6.8 to 17.6, indicating output grew at a faster pace than in August.

Positive readings in the survey generally indicate expansion of factory activity, while readings below zero generally indicate contraction.

Significantly stronger manufacturing activity was reflected in other survey measures as well. The new orders index climbed further into positive territory, and the capacity utilization index surged after a dip in August. The shipments index also rebounded this month.

Perceptions of broader business conditions were more optimistic in September. The general business activity index moved up to a reading of 10.8, nearly four points above its nonrecession average of 7. The company outlook index rose due to a larger share of firms noting an improved outlook in September than in August.

Labor market indicators reflected continued employment growth and longer workweeks. The September employment index posted its fourth robust reading in a row, and the hours worked index rose to a five-month high, indicating a stronger rise in hours worked than in recent months.

Expectations regarding future business conditions remained optimistic in September. The index of future general business activity fell but remained positive, while the index of future company outlook rose.

Indexes for future manufacturing activity generally moved down in September but remained in solidly positive territory.

The Dallas Fed conducts the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey monthly to obtain a timely assessment of the state’s factory activity.

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Media contact:
Alexander Johnson
Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
Phone: 214-922-5288
Email: alexander.johnson@dal.frb.org