Weak Non-Manufacturing ISM Overshadowed by Payrolls and Unemployment

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Today's big news on top of a record for the DJIA and S&P 500 was the drop in unemployment to 7.5% and the better-than-expected payrolls of 165,000. Now we have the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) report on business for the non-manufacturing sector, which came in at a disappointing 53.1% for April. The report is weak, but it just may not matter on a day like this.

This 53.1% reading represents a drop of 1.3 percentage points, versus the 54.4% for March. It is also under the Bloomberg consensus reading of 54.0%. On a net basis, the good news is that this is still growth, even if it is slower growth. Here is a breakdown of the report:

  • Non-Manufacturing Business Activity Index was 55%, down 1.5 points from the 56.5% in March.

  • New Orders Index fell by 0.1 percentage point to 54.5%

  • Employment Index fell by 1.3 points to 52%.

  • Prices Index fell by 4.7 points to 51.2%.

  • Some 14 non-manufacturing industries reported growth in April, with four industries reporting contraction.

Today's ISM is simply overshadowed by the jobs data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and Labor Department. We recently saw that the ISM outlook for 2013 was that the United States would avoid a recession.

To prove that the ISM report just doesn't matter: Here is our synopsis on the DJIA hitting 15,000 and the S&P 500 crossing 1,600 for the first time ever.

Filed under: 24/7 Wall St. Wire, Economy Tagged: featured