US factory orders increased 0.7 percent in May

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Associated Press

Posted on July 3, 2012 at 11:01 AM

Updated Tuesday, Jul 3 at 12:02 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. factories received more orders in May from April after two consecutive months of declines, as businesses demanded more goods that signal investment plans.

The Commerce Department says factory orders increased 0.7 percent in May.

Core capital goods, such as machinery and computers, rose 2.1 percent. That's better than the 1.6 percent estimated in a preliminary report a week ago and is a good measure of companies' plans to invest.

The increase left orders for durable goods at $469 billion, up 43.5 percent from their recession low reached in March 2009. But orders are down 2.5 percent from their post-recession high hit in December.

Manufacturing has slowed this year, hurt by declining consumer and business confidence and weaker global demand.

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