The latest manufacturing survey from the Philadelphia Federal Reserve was a big miss.
The Philly Fed’s report came in at 6.3, down from 24.5 last month and missing expectations for a reading of 18.7.
Last month’s reading was also revised down slightly to 24.3.
Any reading over 0 indicates expansion in manufacturing activity.
Respondents to the survey reported “continued moderation in price pressures, attributable to lower energy costs,” and overall the report suggested that the decline in energy prices were having “overall net positive effects on manufacturing business.”
The survey’s respondents also suggested weaker labour market conditions in January, with more firms reporting a decrease in employment than an increase, the first time this was the case in 19 months.
The reading for future activity came in at 50.9, around where it’s been for the last five months, with 33% of firms expecting to increase their staffing levels in the next six months.
The Philly Fed report comes on what has been a busy morning in markets, with the Swiss National Bank unexpectedly abandoning its currency target, producer prices falling less than expected in December, while jobless claims rose more than expected last week.