Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization - G.17
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Total industrial production increased 0.8 percent in May. Manufacturing production advanced 0.9 percent, reflecting, in part, a large gain in motor vehicle assemblies; factory output excluding motor vehicles and parts increased 0.5 percent. The indexes for mining and utilities rose 1.2 percent and 0.2 percent, respectively.
In May, at 99.9 percent of its 2017 average, total industrial production was 16.3 percent higher than it was a year earlier but 1.4 percent lower than its pre-pandemic (February 2020) level. Capacity utilization for the industrial sector rose 0.6 percentage point in May to 75.2 percent, a rate that is 4.4 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2020) average.
Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization: Summary
|Industrial production||2017=100||Percent change|
|2021|| May '20 to
|Major market groups|
|Major industry groups|
|Manufacturing (see note below)||96.8||98.1||94.6||97.5||97.4||98.2||.6||1.4||-3.6||3.1||-.1||.9||18.3|
|Capacity utilization||Percent of capacity|| Capacity
|2021|| May '20 to
|Manufacturing (see note below)||78.2||85.6||77.3||84.7||63.5||63.7||74.4||75.5||72.8||75.0||74.9||75.6||-.4|
|Primary and semifinished||80.2||86.5||78.1||87.9||63.5||65.7||74.1||74.3||74.0||74.1||74.4||74.7||.3|
Most market groups posted gains in May. The indexes for consumer goods, business equipment, business supplies, and materials all moved up around 1 percent. Within consumer goods, the index for durables advanced nearly 3 percent, mostly resulting from a jump of 5.7 percent in the output of automotive products. The increase in business equipment primarily reflected strength in transit equipment and in information processing equipment. The gain in materials was fairly widespread, with nondurables posting a slightly larger advance than either durables or energy. Construction supplies and defense and space equipment each recorded losses.
Manufacturing output advanced 0.9 percent in May. The index for durable manufacturing stepped up 1.0 percent, with the bulk of the increase resulting from a gain of 6.7 percent for motor vehicles and parts. Overall vehicle assemblies jumped about 1 million units to 9.9 million units (annual rate); even so, they remained more than 1 million units below their average level in the second half of 2020, as production continued to be hampered by shortages of semiconductors. The index for nondurables rose 0.8 percent; nearly all of its components posted gains. Advances of more than 2 percent were recorded by apparel and leather, by printing and support, and by chemicals. The improvement in chemicals chiefly reflected the reopening of some additional petrochemical plants that had been out of commission due to damage from the frigid conditions in February. The output of other manufacturing (publishing and logging) increased 0.8 percent.
Capacity utilization for manufacturing increased 0.7 percentage point in May to 75.6 percent. The operating rate for mining increased 0.9 percentage point to 75.2 percent, while the operating rate for utilities was unchanged at 72.8 percent. The rates for all three sectors remained below their long-run averages.
The Federal Reserve Board issued its annual revision to the indexes of industrial production (IP) and the related measures of capacity utilization on May 28, 2021. The base year for the revised indexes is 2017. New annual benchmark data for manufacturing for 2017 through 2019 were incorporated, as well as other annual data, including information on the mining of metallic and nonmetallic minerals (except fuels). The weights for market-group splits of the industry-level indexes were updated with information from the 2012 benchmark input-output accounts from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. The updated IP indexes included revisions to the monthly production indicator (either product data or input data) and to seasonal factors for each industry. In addition, the estimation methods for some series were changed. Any modifications to the methods for estimating the output of an industry affected the index from 1972 to the present.
Capacity and capacity utilization were revised to incorporate data for manufacturing through the fourth quarter of 2020 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