Orders for big-ticket US manufactured goods up 0.4%

WASHINGTON (AP) — Orders to U.S. factories for big-ticket manufactured goods increased just 0.4% in August following a much larger gain in the previous month.

The Commerce Department reported Friday that the August advance marked the fourth consecutive increase but was far lower than the 11.7% surge seen in July.

Economists had expected a slowdown after big gains following the sharp declines in the spring due to the coronavirus shutdowns. However, the 0.4% August increase was below expectations.

A key category that tracks business investment plans was up 1.8% in August after stronger increases of 2.5% in July and 4.3% in June.