U.S .. manufacturing production fell for a second consecutive month in February, offering further evidence of a sharp slowdown in economic growth at the beginning of the first quarter.
The Federal Reserve said manufacturing production fell 0.4% last month, contained in the downward trend in vehicle, machinery and furniture production. The January figures were revised to show production down 0.5 percent instead of falling by 0.9 percent as previously reported.
Economists interviewed by Reuters had forecast manufacturing production up 0.3 percent in February. Production in the factories increased by 1% in February compared to a year ago.
Last month, motor vehicles and parts production slid 0.1
The decline in manufacturing manufacturing in February was enriched by soft relations ranging from retail sales to housing, suggesting that the economy lost significant momentum at the beginning of the first quarter. Goldman Sachs forecasts that the gross domestic product will increase at an annualized rate of 0.6% in the first quarter. The economy grew at a rate of 2.6 percent in the fourth quarter.
Manufacturing activity, which accounts for about 12 percent of the economy, is losing strength as capital spending cut by the $ 1.5 trillion tax cut package last year it fades. The activity is also aggravated by a trade war between the United States and China, as well as last year's dollar surge and declining global economic growth, which is damaging exports.