US manufacturing grows for 13th straight month

US manufacturing grew again in June, but at a slower rate
than in May, according to the latest figures.

AP reports that the Institute for Supply Management’s (ISM) broad
Purchasing Managers Index for June was 55.3, a slight drop on the May figure of
55.4. Still, it was comfortably above 50, the point which separates expansion
from contraction.

In addition, 15 of the 18 manufacturing industries also
expanded in June, led by furniture makers and mineral producers.

As Dow Jones Business News reports, the ISM survey also showed
that growth in new orders also were at a seven-month high. Production decreased
slightly for the month of June, but was still in line with the Federal
Reserve’s measure of industrial production.

However, the expansion in manufacturing sector has not yet
resulted in significant job creation in the sector. The employment index for
June was unchanged in comparison to May.

This suggests an emphasis on improved productivity. As Mikee
Johnson, chief executive of Cox Industries, a wood manufacturing company in
Orangeburg, S.C put it – “We’re generating a lot more product with fewer
people now.”