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For immediate release: March 26, 2012

Dallas Fed: Texas Manufacturing Expansion Continues

DALLAS—Texas factory activity continued to increase in March, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas’ Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey.

Texas produces more than 9 percent of total manufactured goods in the United States, ranking second behind California in factory production.

The production index—a key measure of state manufacturing conditions—held steady at 11.1, suggesting growth continued at about the same pace as last month.

Positive readings in the survey generally indicate expansion of factory activity, while readings below zero generally indicate contraction.

Other measures of current manufacturing conditions also indicated continued expansion in March, although new orders stagnated.

Labor market indicators reflected higher labor demand. Strong employment growth continued in March. Twenty-nine percent of firms reported hiring new workers, while 7 percent reported layoffs.

Input prices and wages continued to increase in March, while selling prices reversed course and declined slightly. The raw materials price index was 27.7, marginally higher than in February. The March wages and benefits index edged up to 21, its highest reading since mid-2008.

Fifty-seven percent of respondents anticipate further increases in raw materials prices over the next six months, while 35 percent expect higher finished goods prices.

The Dallas Fed conducts the Texas Manufacturing Outlook Survey monthly to obtain a timely assessment of the state’s factory activity.


Media contact:
James Hoard
Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
Phone: (214) 922-5307