(Adding non-manufacturing ISM number, ADP data; inserting analyst comment)
--Factory goods orders fall in June by 0.8% from previous month
--Gauge of capital spending increases modestly
--Report underscores weakness of overall economy
By Jeff Bater and Tom Barkley
Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES
WASHINGTON -(Dow Jones)- Orders for U.S. factory goods fell in June for the second time in three months, a sign the anemic economy is causing strains among manufacturers.
Orders for manufactured goods decreased by 0.8% from the prior month to $ 440.69 billion, the Commerce Department said Wednesday.
Aside from the drop in factory orders, an important reading on the nation's service sector fell to its lowest since February 2010. The Institute for Supply Management said Wednesday its non-manufacturing purchasing managers' index slipped to 52.7 in July from 53.3 in June.
Payroll giant Automatic Data Processing Inc. and consultancy Macroeconomic Advisers said private-sector payrolls increased in July, but their somewhat upbeat report didn't show a jobs gain considered robust or particularly healthy.
Despite a deal in Washington to raise the government debt ceiling and avoid default, stock market prices Wednesday were down, reflecting deepening worry about the overall economy.
"Good economic reports have been few and far between and the slowdown is real, " said Joel Naroff, who runs Naroff Economic Advisors in Holland, Pa. "I don't expect a double-dip, but this economy doesn't need any more speed bumps put in the road."
Overall economic growth was soft in the first half of 2011, as consumers pulled back sharply on their spending. Unemployment in the U.S. is high, and elevated gasoline prices mean consumers have to fork over more of their incomes, which aren't rising much.
The decline in factory orders during June follows a 0.6% increase in May and a drop of 0.9% during April. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones Newswires had forecast a 1.0% drop in overall factory orders in June.
Capital investment on equipment by U.S. businesses rose mildly. A barometer of business spending within the data, non-defense capital goods orders excluding aircraft, increased by 0.4%.
Manufacturing has been a strong part of the economy as it recovers from the recession. But factories have been feeling stress from a slowing economy.
Last week, the government reported orders for long-lasting goods tumbled a second time in three months during June. On Wednesday, the Commerce Department, in its factory report, revised the durable-goods orders drop, to 1.9% from the previously estimated 2.1%.
A report this week suggested manufacturing slowed sharply in July. The ISM's manufacturing index fell to 50.9 from 55.3 in June. The new reading wasn't much above 50, the minimum level that indicates expanding activity in the goods- making sector. Readings below 50 suggest contraction.
-By Jeff Bater, Dow Jones Newswires; 202-862-9249, firstname.lastname@example.org
Editor’s Note (26 December 2015): BBC Capital brings you one of our most-read stories on where you can live well on a budget. Paying fo...
ST. PETERSBURG — Sharing the floor with Russian President Vladimir Putin can test one’s patience. Especially if you’re a woman. Interna...
During the recent financial crisis no issue has aroused more passion than financial institution bailouts. The standard rationale for the ba...
When people near retirement they often wonder how much, if any, life insurance they should have during retirement. When you are working and ...
Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid said Sunday evening that all congressional leaders had agreed to a compromise plan to lift the debt cei...
When a stock such as Apple (Nasdaaq: AAPL) or Chipotle Mexican Grill (NYSE: CMG ) is universally loved, you should think twice about buying ...
Chinese authorities say two attacks in the country's remote region of Xinjiang have left at least 19 people dead, including five attacke...
Hours after a massive bomb struck the heart of Oslo, reports began emerging of fresh horror: the indiscriminate shooting of young people att...
By Jennifer Corbett Dooren, Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES WASHINGTON -(Dow Jones)- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday long-term t...
President Barack Obama haggle over plans to cut Washington's massive debt, the International Monetary Fund says the United States must t...