Washington (AP) — Orders for goods expected to last at least three years fell unexpectedly in August, mainly because of a drop in demand for commercial aircraft.
The second decline in orders for durable goods in three months is evidence that any recovery in manufacturing will be slow and gradual.
According to the Commerce Department on Friday, orders for durable goods dropped 2.4 percent in August, after increasing a revised 4.8 percent in July. Wall Street economists expected a 0.5 percent increase, according to a survey by Thomson Reuters.
Orders for commercial aircraft and parts, a volatile category, plummeted 42.2 percent after nearly doubling in July.
Excluding aircraft and other transportation goods, orders were flat in August, also below analysts’ expectations of a 0.5 percent rise. Transportation goods orders dropped 9.3 percent.