The ISM Manufacturing Index increased to 52.9 in August, better than the expected 50.7 estimate, after increasing to 48.9 in July.  This is the highest level since June of 2007 as the index had been below 50 for the past 18 months, thus ending the streak of contraction towards recovery in the manufacturing sector.  11 of 18 manufacturing industries are reporting growth when comparing August to July: Textile Mills; Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Paper Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Printing & Related Support Activities; Computer & Electronic Products; Transportation Equipment; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Fabricated Metal Products; and Chemical Products.

Construction Spending in July edged down by 0.2% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $985.0 billion, and was expected to remain flat following a 0.1% increase in July (revised downward from a 0.3% gain).  Private construction is up by 0.1% over the month, while public construction is down by 0.7%.  Over the past year, construction spending has declined by 10.5% (-17.0% change in private; +5.5% change in public). 

Upcoming Releases
Factory Orders (09/02 at 10:00 AM EST)
FOMC Minutes (09/02 at 2:00 PM EST)
Initial Claims (09/03 at 8:30 AM EST)
ISM Services Index (09/03 at 10:00 AM EST)
Unemployment Rate (09/04 at 8:30 AM EST)

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