The Chicago Purchasing Managers Index for the month of October did manage to tick up from September, but it is unfortunately still in contraction territory. The report came in at 49.9 in October, and 49.7 was the reading in September. Bloomberg was calling for the Chicago PMI to rise back above the 50.0 mark up to 51.0, and it had a range from economists of 49.5 to 52.0.
The actual report from the ISM Chicago even noted that this was still contractionary. It said:
Business Activity measures reflected weakness in five of seven indexes, most notably as the rate of expansion in Production and Employment slowed while New Orders stalled near neutral and Order Backlogs remained in contraction.
Other comments were still cautious. Employment was at a 33-month low. Inventories slipped into contraction. The prices paid component was slightly lower.
Buying policy was also weak, with capital equipment at a 26-month low. Another issue was the lead times for production materials remain above long-term averages.
JON C. OGG