Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization - G.17
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Industrial production declined 0.1 percent in December. Losses of 0.3 percent for manufacturing and 1.5 percent for utilities were mostly offset by a gain of 2.0 percent for mining. For the fourth quarter as a whole, total industrial production rose at an annual rate of 4.0 percent. At 101.9 percent of its 2017 average, total industrial production in December was 3.7 percent higher than it was at the end of 2020 and 0.6 percent above its pre-pandemic (February 2020) reading. Capacity utilization for the industrial sector edged down 0.1 percentage point in December to 76.5 percent, a rate that is 3.1 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2020) average.
Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization: Summary
|Industrial production||2017=100||Percent change|
|2021||2021|| Dec. '20 to
|Major market groups|
|Major industry groups|
|Manufacturing (see note below)||99.5||99.0||98.5||99.9||100.5||100.2||1.4||-.6||-.5||1.4||.6||-.3||3.5|
|Capacity utilization||Percent of capacity|| Capacity
|2021|| Dec. '20 to
|Manufacturing (see note below)||78.2||85.6||77.3||84.7||63.5||74.4||76.6||76.1||75.7||76.8||77.2||77.0||.2|
|Primary and semifinished||80.2||86.5||78.1||87.9||63.5||74.1||75.1||75.4||74.9||75.0||75.7||75.2||.7|
Market groups posted mixed results in December. The production of consumer goods moved down nearly 1 percent, with decreases of 1 percent and 3 percent for durables and consumer energy products, respectively, and little change for non-energy nondurables. The indexes for business equipment and for business supplies each fell about 1/2 percent, while the indexes for defense and space equipment and for construction supplies each rose about 1/4 percent. The output of materials moved up 1/2 percent, with gains for nondurable materials and for energy materials.
Manufacturing production declined 0.3 percent in December but was up 3-1/2 percent over the past 12 months; in the fourth quarter, factory output rose nearly 5 percent at an annual rate. The index for motor vehicles and parts stepped down 1.3 percent in December and was about 6 percent lower than its year-earlier level. Excluding the motor vehicle sector, factory output dipped 0.2 percent, with similarly sized decreases for durables and nondurables. Within durables, miscellaneous manufacturing recorded the largest decrease (2.7 percent), while wood products and nonmetallic mineral products posted the largest increases (1.2 percent and 1.5 percent, respectively). Within nondurables, chemicals posted the largest gain (0.7 percent), but most other subcategories recorded losses of between 1 and 2 percent. The output of other manufacturing (publishing and logging) decreased 0.8 percent.
The index for mining increased 2.0 percent in December, primarily reflecting gains in the oil and gas sector. Mining output rose more than 15 percent at an annual rate in the fourth quarter and has risen more than 10 percent from its level of a year earlier. Even so, the index for mining in December was about 6 percent below its pre-pandemic level.
The decrease of 1.5 percent in the index for utilities in December primarily resulted from a drop in the output of gas utilities, as warmer-than-normal temperatures reduced demand for heating.
Capacity utilization for manufacturing decreased 0.2 percentage point in December to 77.0 percent, 1.5 percentage points higher than its pre-pandemic level but still 1.2 percentage points below its long-run average. The operating rates for mining and utilities increased to 79.1 percent and 71.0 percent, respectively, but both remained well below their long-run averages.
The Federal Reserve Board plans to issue its annual revision to the indexes of industrial production (IP) and the related measures of capacity utilization in the second quarter of 2022. New annual benchmark data for manufacturing for 2020 will be incorporated, as well as other annual data, including information on the mining of metallic and nonmetallic minerals (except fuels). The updated IP indexes will include revisions to the monthly indicator (either product data or input data) and to seasonal factors for each industry. In addition, the estimation methods for some series may be changed. Any modifications to the methods for estimating the output of an industry will affect the index from 1972 to the present.
Capacity and capacity utilization will be revised to incorporate data for manufacturing through the fourth quarter of 2021 from the U.S. Census Bureau's Quarterly Survey of Plant Capacity Utilization, along with new data on capacity from the U.S. Geological Survey, the U.S. Department of Energy, and other organizations.Note. The statistics in this release cover output, capacity, and capacity utilization in the U.S. industrial sector, which is defined by the Federal Reserve to comprise manufacturing, mining, and electric and gas utilities. Mining is defined as all industries in sector 21 of the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS); electric and gas utilities are those in NAICS sectors 2211 and 2212. Manufacturing comprises NAICS manufacturing industries (sector 31-33) plus the logging industry and the newspaper, periodical, book, and directory publishing industries. Logging and publishing are classified elsewhere in NAICS (under agriculture and information respectively), but historically they were considered to be manufacturing and were included in the industrial sector under the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) system. In December 2002 the Federal Reserve reclassified all its industrial output data from the SIC system to NAICS.
G.17 Release Tables:
- Summary: Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization
- Chart 1: Industrial Production, Capacity, and Capacity Utilization
- Chart 2: Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization
- Chart 3: Industrial Production of Selected Industries
- Table 1: Industrial Production: Market and Industry Groups (percent change)
- Table 2: Industrial Production: Special Aggregates and Selected Detail (percent change)
- Table 3: Motor Vehicle Assemblies
- Table 4: Industrial Production Indexes: Market and Industry Group Summary
- Table 5: Industrial Production Indexes: Special Aggregates
- Table 6: Diffusion Indexes of Industrial Production
- Table 7: Capacity Utilization: Manufacturing, Mining, and Utilities
- Table 8: Industrial Capacity: Manufacturing, Mining, and Utilities (percent change)
- Table 9: Industrial Production: Gross Value of Products and Nonindustrial Supplies
- Table 10: Gross-Value-Weighted Industrial Production: Stage-of-Process Groups
- Table 11: Historical Statistics for IP, Capacity, and Utilization: Total Industry
- Table 12: Historical Statistics for IP, Capacity, and Utilization: Manufacturing
- Table 13: Historical Statistics for IP, Capacity, and Utilization: Total Industry excluding Selected High-Technology Industries
- Table 14: Historical Statistics for IP, Capacity, and Utilization: Manufacturing excluding Selected High-Technology Industries
- Table 15: Industrial Production: Reliability Estimates