New orders for manufactured goods increased $7.6 billion (1.5%) to $496.7 billion for June, according to a Department of Commerce report [link opens in PDF] released today.
After growing a revised 3% the previous month, analysts had expected a slightly more positive 2.3% gain. Still, June's report marks the fourth increase over a five-month period, and is the highest level of new orders recorded since data was first collected in 1992.
Durable goods led the charge, with new orders up 3.9%. Transportation equipment accounted for a major portion of the progress with 12% gains. According to The Wall Street Journal, commercial aircraft orders are the primary push behind the increase. Durable goods improvements proved more than enough to offset lackluster new orders for manufactured nondurable goods, down 0.6%.
Overall unfilled orders increased 2.1%, while shipments fell 0.4%. Inventories increased 0.1% to yet another all-time high. The inventories-to-shipments ratio, a statistic used to measure the sustainable flow of goods, remained steady at 1.30.