U.S. Manufacturing Squeezed by Global Slowdown, Trade Pressures



Sarah Chaney and Austen Hufford | The Wall Street Journal

American manufacturing production failed to bounce back last month after slumping earlier in the year, showing the global slowdown is squeezing a key sector in the U.S. economy.

The manufacturing sector has sent mixed signals in recent weeks, but Federal Reserve data released Tuesday reinforces the view that manufacturing has hit a soft patch.

Manufacturing output was flat in March after falling in the first two months of 2019, according the Fed data. For the first quarter as a whole, manufacturing output declined at an annual rate of 1.1%, the first drop since output fell 1.6% in the third quarter of 2017.