US durable goods orders fall by more than expected in January
Orders for goods made last more than three years shrank by more than expected during the previous month as the surge in jet orders seen at the end of 2022 reversed.
However, the details of the report were more solid, although economists put that strength down to the warm weather and problems seasonally adjusting the data.
According to the Department of Commerce, in seasonally adjusted terms, durable goods orders shrank at a month-on-month pace of 4.5% to reach $272.26bn.
That was worse the 3.0% drop that economists had penciled in and came on top of a downwards revision to the prior month's jump in orders from 5.6% to 5.1%.
Nonetheless, the decline was wholly due to a 54.6% slump in orders for nondefence aircraft and parts to $12.52bn after they had more than doubled in December.
Excluding transportation orders were up by 0.7% (consensus: 0.1%) to reach $272.3bn.
Orders for capital goods excluding aircraft and defence - known as core capital goods orders - meanwhile also rose by 0.8% to reach $75.3bn (consensus: 0.0%).
Commenting on the latest figures, Ian Shepherdson at Pantheon Macroeconomics said the "much warmer-than-usual" January weather likely boosted durable goods orders excluding transportation and that they would likely mean revert in February and March.
In the case of the core orders, Shepherdson noted that while the trend in nominal orders were between flat to slightly downwards, real orders were falling.
Even so, in the case of core capital goods orders, he went on to add that "Surveys suggest further declines are coming, though the rebound in China’s manufacturing numbers means that the U.S. ISM and regional manufacturing surveys ought to see a modest uptick over the next few months."