Inland Empire manufacturing performed the same in March as it did in February, and that’s good news.
The region’s purchasing managers index was 64.3 last month, virtually unchanged from February’s 63.9 and well above the 50 benchmark that determines whether manufacturing is expanding or contracting, the Institute of Applied Research and Policy Analysis at Cal State San Bernardino reported today.
Best of all, the index has been above 50 for seven consecutive months, indicating “slow, steady growth” in manufacturing, and the local economy, during that time.
More positive news: the production index increased to 68.3 in March from 64.3 in February, while new orders dropped from 73.2 to 65. The latter means new orders are still increasing, but not quite as fast as they were last month.
The employment index increased from 51.8 in February to 53.3 last month.
Forty four percent of all purchasing managers surveyed said they expect the local economy to improve during the next three months, up from 35 percent in February. Nineteen percent said they expect it to get weaker during that time, and 37 percent said they expect it to remain the same, according to the report.