Headline Durable Goods Orders Up 5.6% in December

This article was originally written by Doug Short. From 2016-2022, it was improved upon and updated by Jill Mislinski. Starting in January 2023, AP Charts pages will be maintained by Jennifer Nash at Advisor Perspectives/VettaFi.

The latest new orders number at 5.6% month-over-month (MoM) was better than the Investing.com 2.5% estimate. The series is up 11.9% year-over-year (YoY). If we exclude transportation, "core" durable goods was down 0.1% MoM and up 2.1% YoY.

New orders for manufactured durable goods in December, up four of the last five months, increased $15.3 billion or 5.6 percent to $286.9 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced today. This followed a 1.7 percent November decrease. Excluding transportation, new orders decreased 0.1 percent. Excluding defense, new orders increased 6.3 percent. Transportation equipment, also up four of the last five months, drove the increase, $15.5 billion or 16.7 percent to $108.1 billion. Download full PDF

Core capital goods new orders (non-defense capital goods used in the production of goods or services, excluding aircraft) is an important gauge of business spending, often referred to as "core capex." It was down -0.2% MoM and up 5.2% YoY.

For a look at the big picture and an understanding of the relative size of the major components, here is an area chart of durable goods new orders minus transportation and defense with those two components stacked on top. We've also included a dotted line to show the relative size of core capex.

Durable Goods Components

The next chart shows the year-over-year percent change in durable goods. We've highlighted the value at recession starts and the latest value for this metric.

Core Durable Goods