Five Federal Reserve indexes of regional manufacturing all slumped in December, the first time they’ve fallen in unison since May 2016 and the latest evidence that a pillar of the U.S. economy has started to wobble heading into next year.
The Dallas Fed’s factory index unexpectedly contracted this month, falling to a two-year low of minus 5.1 from 17.6 in November, and the steepest decline since 2013. Oil prices are down about 40% from a nearly four-year high in October.
More than 20% of manufacturers said that their outlook worsened in December, according to the regional Fed report.
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