Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization - G.17
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In January, total industrial production increased 1.4 percent. Manufacturing output and mining production rose 0.2 percent and 1.0 percent, respectively. The index for utilities jumped 9.9 percent; after being held down in December by unusually mild weather, the demand for heating surged in January with the arrival of significantly colder-than-normal temperatures. At 103.5 percent of its 2017 average, total industrial production in January was 4.1 percent higher than its year-earlier level and 2.1 percent above its pre-pandemic (February 2020) reading. Capacity utilization for the industrial sector increased 1.0 percentage point in January to 77.6 percent, a rate that is 1.9 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2021) average.
Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization: Summary
|Industrial production||2017=100||Percent change|
| Jan. '21 to
|Major market groups|
|Major industry groups|
|Manufacturing (see note below)||99.0||98.2||99.9||100.6||100.4||100.7||-.5||-.8||1.7||.7||-.1||.2||2.5|
|Capacity utilization||Percent of capacity|| Capacity
| Jan. '21 to
|Manufacturing (see note below)||78.1||85.6||77.3||84.7||63.5||75.6||76.2||75.5||76.8||77.3||77.2||77.3||.2|
|Primary and semifinished||80.0||86.5||78.1||87.9||63.5||74.3||75.5||74.7||75.0||75.8||75.4||77.0||.7|
The jump in the output of utilities in January contributed to large gains in consumer energy products, business supplies, and energy materials. Most other major market groups recorded modest gains or little change. Despite a large increase for appliances, furniture, and carpeting, weakness in automotive products and in miscellaneous goods left the index for overall consumer durables unchanged. Consumer non-energy nondurables, business equipment, defense and space equipment, durable materials, and nondurable materials all registered gains of less than 3/4 percent. The only major market group with a noteworthy decline (1.3 percent) was construction supplies. In January, the indexes for most market groups were above their year-earlier readings; some notable exceptions were automotive products, transit equipment, and consumer parts, all of which were substantially lower than at the beginning of last year because of the ongoing shortage of semiconductor chips that has impeded vehicle assemblies.
Manufacturing output rose 0.2 percent in January and was up 2.5 percent over the past 12 months. In January, durable manufacturing, nondurable manufacturing, and other manufacturing (publishing and logging) each recorded increases of 0.2 percent. Within durables, miscellaneous manufacturing and machinery posted the largest gains, while motor vehicles and parts and nonmetallic mineral products posted the largest losses. Within nondurables, sizable increases were recorded by textile and product mills; food, beverage, and tobacco products; and paper. The largest losses came in the indexes for printing and support and for petroleum and coal products, which both declined around 1.5 percent.
The increase of 9.9 percent in the output of utilities in January was the largest in the history of the index (since 1972) and reflected strength for both electric utilities and natural gas utilities. The index for mining rose 1.0 percent. Oil and gas well drilling advanced 6.2 percent; the index in January was nearly 50 percent above its year-earlier level but still about 14 percent below its pre-pandemic reading.
Capacity utilization for manufacturing increased 0.1 percentage point in January to 77.3 percent, 1.8 percentage points higher than its pre-pandemic level but still 0.8 percentage point below its long-run average. The operating rate for mining rose 0.5 percentage point to 79.1 percent, and the operating rate for utilities advanced 6.9 percentage points to 78.1 percent. Despite these gains, both rates remained below their long-run averages.
Note: Preliminary Estimates of Industrial Capacity
The data in this release include preliminary estimates of industrial capacity for 2022 (table 8). Measured from fourth quarter to fourth quarter, total industrial capacity is projected to rise 0.9 percent this year after increasing 0.4 percent in 2021. Manufacturing capacity is expected to move up 0.3 percent in 2022 after edging up 0.1 percent in 2021. Capacity in the mining sector is estimated to rise 2.0 percent in 2022 after falling 1.1 percent in 2021. Capacity at electric and natural gas utilities is projected to increase 2.4 percent in 2022 after expanding 2.6 percent in 2021.
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