Snapshot: COVID-19 Hits Manufacturers
Texas factory activity declined sharply as the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak took hold in March, according to business executives responding to the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey. The production index, a key measure of state manufacturing conditions, plummeted from 16.4 in February to -35.3 (Chart 1).
Expectations regarding business conditions turned strongly negative. The company outlook index fell to an all-time low of -65.6. Indexes for future manufacturing activity also fell sharply.
The survey uses diffusion indexes—the percentage of respondents reporting a decrease is subtracted from the percentage reporting an increase. Negative values indicate contraction, positive ones expansion.
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