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U.S. Durable Goods Orders Jump 1.2% In December But Miss Estimates


Reflecting a continued spike in orders for transportation equipment, the Commerce Department released a report on Thursday showing a significant increase in U.S. durable goods orders in the month of December.

The report said durable goods orders surged up by 1.2 percent in December after jumping by an upwardly revised 1.0 percent in November.

Economists had expected durable goods orders to soar by 1.5 percent compared to the 0.7 percent increase that had been reported for the previous month.

The notable increase in durable goods orders came as orders for transportation equipment jumped by 3.3 percent in December after spiking by 3.4 percent in November. Orders for transportation equipment further offset the 12.4 percent nosedive in October.

Orders for non-defense aircraft and parts led the way higher, soaring by 28.4 percent in December after surging up by 4.5 percent in the previous month.

Excluding the jump in orders for transportation equipment, durable goods orders inched up by 0.1 percent in December after slipping by 0.2 percent in November. Ex-transportation orders had been expected to rise by 0.3 percent.

The Commerce Department also said orders for non-defense capital goods excluding aircraft, a closely watched indicator of business spending, fell by 0.7 percent in December after tumbling by 1.0 percent in November.

Andrew Hunter, Senior U.S. Economist at Capital Economics said, "The December durables goods data suggest that equipment investment growth slowed further in the fourth quarter, and we expect it to remain weak for most of this year."

"Overall, the durable goods data provide further reason to think that economic growth will soon slow to below its 2% potential pace, which will keep the Fed on hold throughout this year," he added.

The report also showed shipments of durable goods climbed by 0.8 percent in December after jumping by 1.0 percent in November.

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