Industrial production declined modestly in December, falling 0.1% against the prior month.
Capacity utilization declined a bit more than expected in December, falling to 79.7% from a revised level of 80% in November.
Expectations were for production to fall 0.1% in December after a 1.3% increase in November, while capacity utilization was expected to fall to 79.9% from 80.1%.
According to the report from the Federal Reserve, the decline in December, “reflected a sharp drop in the output of utilities, as warmer-than-usual temperatures reduced demand for heading.” Excluding utilities, the Fed said industrial production rose 0.7% in December.
The report on capacity utilization follows the latest CPI report which showed consumer prices fell by 0.4% in December, the biggest monthly decrease since December 2008.
More to come …