American factory orders hit two-year low
March 12, 2001,
As the U.S. economy continues to weaken, U.S. factory orders fell almost 4 percent in January to their lowest level since 1999, driven down by weak demand for new aircraft, the Commerce Department reported.
The value of new factory orders dropped off by 3.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted level of $366.5 billion, more than offsetting a modest 0.6 percent increase in December. And even that skimpy December gain was revised downward from an earlier estimate of a 1.1 percent increase.
Excluding the highly volatile transportation sector, which includes aircraft orders and is subject to wide fluctuation, January factory orders continued a recent slide, falling by 0.3 percent after a 1.1 percent decline in December.