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Economic Report: U.S. industrial output surges in October after stumbling from Hurricane Ida

The numbers: Industrial production rose 1.6% in October, the Federal Reserve reported Tuesday, recovering all of the 1.3% decline experienced in the prior month.

The increase was above Wall Street expectations of a 0.8% gain, according to a survey by The Wall Street Journal.

Capacity utilization rebounded to 76.4% in October from 75.2 in the prior month. The capacity utilization rate reflects the limits to operating the nation’s factories, mines and utilities.  Economists had forecast a 75.8% rate.

Key details: Manufacturing output rose 1.3% in October after a 1.1% drop in the prior month. Manufacturing has reached its highest level since March 2019 with strong gains for both durable and nondurable goods.

Motor vehicles and parts output surged 11% after a 7.1% decline in the prior month. Excluding autos, manufacturing output increased 1.2%.

Utilities output rose 1.2% in October. Mining output, which includes oil and natural gas, jumped 4.1%.

Big picture: About half the gain in October reflected a recovery from the effects of Hurricane Ida which hit the U.S. Gulf Coast in late August and wrought damage in the Northeast in early September. There was also a strong gain in autos. Overall, the manufacturing sector is struggling to meet high demand because of supply chain woes.

Market snapshot: U.S. stocks


traded modestly higher Tuesday after data showed a stronger-than-expected rise in October retail sales, while investors also digested results from major retailers.

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