The improvements in the industrial segment helped offset concerns over exports of American-made goods to foreign countries, which pulled back since May 2018 on the rising protectionist rhetoric, the trade dispute between the U.S. and China, and slowing global economy.
However, some observers warn that the global environment may be more challenging ahead.
“The incoming survey evidence still suggests that underlying manufacturing output growth is set to slow over the coming months,” Michael Pearce, senior U.S. economist at Capital Economics, said in a note to clients. “With demand in key export markets weakening, and the appreciation of the dollar also weighing on the competitiveness of U.S. manufacturers, we expect growth in the factory sector will (eventually) slow sharply in 2019.”
For more information on the industrial sector, visit our industrial category.