New orders for durable goods rose slightly in April, paced by transportation equipment.
Orders increased 0.4 percent to $265.3 billion, the U.S. Commerce Department said today in a monthly report. It was the sixth rise in seven months and followed a 0.6 percent increase in March.
Transportation equipment posted a gain of 0.6 percent to $86.7 billion. That followed two consecutive monthly decreases for the category.
Within transportation, orders for commercial aircraft and parts rose 4.3 percent to $14.5 billion. Orders for defense aircraft and parts increased 1 percent to $4.9 billion. Orders for motor vehicles and parts slipped 0.2 percent to $57.7 billion.
The commercial aircraft category was hammed when the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020. There has been improvement since. The auto industry has been hampered by a shortage of computer chips which is expected to last into 2023.
Excluding transportation, durable goods orders rose 0.3 percent. Excluding defense, orders also increased 0.3 percent.
Among other categories orders for primary metals gained 0.6 percent to $20.9 billion. Orders for machinery gained 1 percent to $37.7 billion. Orders for fabricated metal products slipped 0.1 percent to $36.9 billion.
The report is based on a survey of about 3,100 companies.
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