Manufacturing is up slightly in the Philadelphia area, according to a December Philadelphia Federal Reserve report (link opens as PDF) released today. 

The "Philly Fed" publishes the results of a monthly survey asking regional (eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey, and Delaware) manufacturing stakeholders whether certain components of manufacturing have experienced growth (positive number), or contraction (negative number). Investors watch regional manufacturing reports as a possible signal of larger economic upswings or downturns.

After clocking in at 6.5 for November, analysts had expected December's report to push ahead to 10. Actual results came in at 7.0, below expectations but solid growth nonetheless.  

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Source: Philadelphia Federal Reserve. 

Dissecting the index into components, all-important new orders pushed ahead to 15.4 from November's 11.8 reading. Shipments are also up 7.7 points to 13.3, although unfilled orders and delivery times are in the red (-5.0 and -9.0, respectively). 

Looking ahead, December's optimistic report is slightly subdued. The survey's future conditions (six months from now) index registered a 1.8 point decrease, to 44.0. New orders dropped 2.5 points to 45.0, but all components remained in growth territory. 

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