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November Non-Manufacturing ISM Report On Business® Indicates Slow Growth

This contributed column is sponsored by Business Facilities LiveXchange.

Posted by Heidi Schwartz

Economic activity in the non-manufacturing sector grew in November for the 47th consecutive month, say the nation’s purchasing and supply executives in the latest Non-Manufacturing ISM Report On Business® The Non-Manufacturing Index (NMI) is a composite index based on the diffusion indexes for four of the indicators with equal weights: Business Activity (seasonally adjusted), New Orders (seasonally adjusted), Employment (seasonally adjusted) and Supplier Deliveries.

“According to the NMI , 11 non-manufacturing industries reported growth in November. Respondents’ comments for the most part indicate the non-manufacturing sector is maintaining a steady course of incremental growth and a positive outlook for the upcoming months,” said Anthony Nieves, CPSM, C.P.M., CFPM, chair of the Institute for Supply Management™ Non-Manufacturing Business Survey Committee.

The 11 non-manufacturing industries reporting growth in November — listed in order — are: Transportation & Warehousing; Retail Trade; Management of Companies & Support Services; Other Services; Information; Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing & Hunting; Wholesale Trade; Finance & Insurance; Public Administration; Educational Services; and Professional, Scientific & Technical Services. The six industries reporting contraction in November — listed in order — are: Mining; Accommodation & Food Services; Utilities; Health Care & Social Assistance; Arts, Entertainment & Recreation; and Construction.

In November, the NMI registered 53.9 percent, indicating continued growth in the non-manufacturing sector for the 47th consecutive month. A reading above 50 percent indicates the non-manufacturing sector economy is generally expanding; below 50 percent indicates the non-manufacturing sector is generally contracting.

ISM’s Non-Manufacturing Business Activity Index in November registered 55.5 percent, 4.2 percentage points lower than the 59.7 percent registered in October. Ten industries reported increased business activity, and five industries reported decreased activity for the month of November. Comments from respondents include: “Modest growth this month” and “Economic conditions are more stable, and customers are increasing discretionary spending.”

The industries reporting growth of business activity in November — listed in order — are: Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing & Hunting; Retail Trade; Transportation & Warehousing; Other Services; Management of Companies & Support Services; Finance & Insurance; Information; Wholesale Trade; Public Administration; and Professional, Scientific & Technical Services. The industries reporting decreased business activity in November are: Mining; Accommodation & Food Services; Arts, Entertainment & Recreation; Utilities; and Health Care & Social Assistance.

Employment activity in the non-manufacturing sector grew in November for the 16th consecutive month. ISM’s Non-Manufacturing Employment Index registered 52.5 percent, which reflects a decrease of 3.7 percentage points when compared to the 56.2 percent registered in October. Seven industries reported increased employment, and eight industries reported decreased employment. Comments from respondents include: “Rightsizing the workforce” and “Employment ramp up.”

The industries reporting an increase in employment in November — listed in order — are: Transportation & Warehousing; Retail Trade; Information; Management of Companies & Support Services; Wholesale Trade; Public Administration; and Finance & Insurance. The industries reporting a reduction in employment in November — listed in order — are: Mining; Utilities; Educational Services; Accommodation & Food Services; Construction; Health Care & Social Assistance; Professional, Scientific & Technical Services; and Other Services.

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About The Author

Schwartz joined Group C Media in April 1989 as managing editor of Today's Facility Manager. In September 2012, she transitioned to a new role dedicated to developing online content for Business Facilities and Today's Facility Manager. Schwartz can be reached at [email protected]

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