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Release Date: April 16, 2024
Revision of Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization Notice Below

Industrial production rose 0.4 percent in March but declined at an annual rate of 1.8 percent in the first quarter. Manufacturing output increased 0.5 percent in March, boosted in part by a gain of 3.1 percent in motor vehicles and parts; factory output excluding motor vehicles and parts moved up 0.3 percent. The index for mining fell 1.4 percent, and the index for utilities gained 2 percent. At 102.7 percent of its 2017 average, total industrial production in March was unchanged compared with its year-earlier level. Capacity utilization moved up to 78.4 percent in March, a rate that is 1.2 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2023) average.

Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization: Summary
Seasonally adjusted
Industrial production 2017=100 Percent change
2023 2024 2023 2024 Mar. '23 to
Mar. '24
Oct.[r] Nov.[r] Dec.[r] Jan.[r] Feb.[r] Mar.[p] Oct.[r] Nov.[r] Dec.[r] Jan.[r] Feb.[r] Mar.[p]
       
Total index 102.6 102.9 102.6 101.8 102.3 102.7 -.7 .4 -.3 -.8 .4 .4 .0
Previous estimates 102.6 103.0 102.7 102.2 102.3   -.7 .4 -.3 -.5 .1    
       
Major market groups
Final Products 100.9 101.7 101.3 100.9 100.7 101.7 -.5 .8 -.5 -.3 -.2 1.0 .5
Consumer goods 101.5 102.3 101.8 101.7 100.8 102.1 -.6 .8 -.5 -.1 -.9 1.2 -.4
Business equipment 95.3 96.3 96.0 95.0 96.9 97.0 -.6 1.1 -.4 -1.0 2.0 .1 1.7
Nonindustrial supplies 100.5 100.2 99.8 99.1 100.1 100.3 .0 -.3 -.4 -.7 1.1 .2 -.3
Construction 101.2 101.0 100.5 98.8 101.5 100.5 -.3 -.1 -.6 -1.7 2.7 -1.0 -.5
Materials 104.8 105.0 104.8 103.6 104.3 104.3 -1.1 .2 -.2 -1.2 .8 .0 -.3
       
Major industry groups
Manufacturing (see note below) 98.9 99.4 99.4 98.2 99.4 99.9 -.7 .5 .0 -1.1 1.2 .5 .8
Previous estimates 98.9 99.4 99.5 98.4 99.2   -.7 .6 .0 -1.1 .8    
Mining 119.5 119.0 120.0 113.9 117.3 115.7 -.7 -.4 .8 -5.1 3.0 -1.4 -2.0
Utilities 105.9 106.2 102.0 109.7 101.4 103.5 -1.1 .3 -4.0 7.6 -7.6 2.0 -3.1

Capacity utilization Percent of capacity Capacity
growth
Average
1972-
2023
1988-
89
high
1990-
91
low
1994-
95
high
 
2009
low
 
2023
Mar.
   
2023 2024 Mar. '23 to
Mar. '24
Oct.[r] Nov.[r] Dec.[r] Jan.[r] Feb.[r] Mar.[p]
       
Total industry 79.6 85.2 78.8 85.0 66.6 79.5 78.8 79.0 78.7 77.9 78.2 78.4 1.4
Previous estimates             78.8 79.0 78.7 78.3 78.3    
       
Manufacturing (see note below) 78.2 85.6 77.3 84.6 63.4 77.8 77.1 77.4 77.3 76.3 77.1 77.4 1.4
Previous estimates             77.1 77.4 77.4 76.4 77.0    
Mining 86.5 86.3 84.3 88.6 78.9 92.3 93.9 93.6 94.4 89.6 92.3 91.0 -.6
Utilities 84.4 93.2 84.7 93.2 78.1 73.8 71.7 71.7 68.7 73.7 67.9 69.1 3.5
       
Stage-of-process groups
Crude 85.7 87.9 84.8 90.0 76.9 90.4 91.1 91.0 92.1 88.4 90.4 89.7 -.5
Primary and semifinished 80.2 86.5 78.0 87.8 63.6 77.3 76.7 76.8 75.9 76.2 75.3 75.8 1.5
Finished 76.7 83.4 77.5 80.7 66.3 76.4 75.4 75.8 75.6 74.8 75.7 75.9 2.2
[r] Revised. [p] Preliminary.

Market Groups

Most major market groups recorded growth in March. The production of consumer durables gained 1.9 percent, bolstered by a 3.2 percent increase in the output of automotive products. Elsewhere, there were significant gains in the indexes of nondurable consumer goods (1.0 percent), defense and space equipment (0.9 percent), and business supplies (0.8 percent). In contrast, the production of energy materials decreased 0.3 percent, and the index for construction supplies declined 1.0 percent.

Industry Groups

Manufacturing output increased 0.5 percent in March and was 0.8 percent above its year-earlier level. For the first quarter, factory output ticked down 0.1 percent at an annual rate. The indexes for durable manufacturing and nondurable manufacturing moved up 0.3 percent and 0.7 percent in March, respectively, while the index for other manufacturing (publishing and logging) edged down 0.2 percent.

Industry groups within durable manufacturing posted mixed results in March. Significant gains were recorded in motor vehicles and parts (3.1 percent), aerospace and miscellaneous transportation equipment (1.2 percent), and wood products (0.7 percent). In contrast, the indexes for nonmetallic mineral products, for furniture, and for primary metals fell 1.8 percent, 1.0 percent, and 0.7 percent, respectively. Within nondurables, gains in the output of petroleum and coal products (4.8 percent) and chemicals (0.7 percent) were partially offset by a decline of 0.5 percent in the output of food, beverage, and tobacco products.

Mining output decreased 1.4 percent in March and fell at an annual rate of 12.3 percent in the first quarter. Declines in the output of oil and gas extraction, mining (except oil and gas), and support services for mining all contributed to the first quarter drop in mining output. In March, the output of utilities increased 2 percent, as both electric and natural gas utilities moved up.

Capacity utilization for manufacturing moved up 0.3 percentage point in March to 77.4 percent, a rate that is 0.8 percentage point below its long-run average. The operating rate for mining fell 1.3 percentage points to 91.0 percent, while the operating rate for utilities increased 1.2 percentage points to 69.1 percent. The rate for mining was 4.5 percentage points above its long-run average, while the rate for utilities remained substantially below its long-run average.

Revision of Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization

The Federal Reserve Board plans to issue its annual revision to the indexes of industrial production (IP) and the related measures of capacity utilization tentatively in the first half of 2024. The Economic Census for 2022 will not be available from the U.S. Census Bureau by early 2024, so no new annual benchmark data will be included for manufacturing. Other annual data, including information on the mining of metallic and nonmetallic minerals (except fuels), will be incorporated. 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 2023 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.

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Last Update: April 16, 2024