Orders for big-ticket US manufactured goods up weak 0.4%

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Photo credit FILE - In this Sept. 20, 2019, file photo, Maurine Carter works on the wiring of a stove in LaFayette, Ga. Orders to American factories for big-ticket goods rebounded last month from a disastrous April as the U.S. economy began to slowly reopen. The Commerce Department said that orders for manufactured goods meant to last at least three years shot up 15.8% in May after plunging 18.1% in April.(Erin O. Smith/Chattanooga Times Free Press via AP, File)
By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Orders to U.S. factories for big-ticket manufactured goods increased just 0.4% in August following a much larger gain in the previous month.

The Commerce Department reported Friday that the August advance marked the fourth consecutive increase but was far lower than the 11.7% surge seen in July.

Economists had expected a slowdown after big gains following the sharp declines in the spring due to the coronavirus shutdowns. However, the 0.4% August increase was below expectations.

A key category that tracks business investment plans was up 1.8% in August after stronger increases of 2.5% in July and 4.3% in June.