October 31, 2018 / 1:09 PM / 10 months ago

U.S. Upper Midwest factory sector growth rebounds in October

(Reuters) - A measure of factory activity in the U.S. Upper Midwest rose in October, rebounding from a 13-month low, led by a jump in inventories, amid concerns about tariffs, according to a private-sector survey released on Wednesday.

Marquette University and the Institute for Supply Management-Milwaukee said their seasonally adjusted index on manufacturing in the Milwaukee region increased to 58.21 this month from 56.16 in September, which was lowest since in August 2017.

A reading above 50 indicates regional factory activity is expanding.

The survey showed respondents saying: “Tariffs are driving significant product re-sourcing” and “Export demands are slowing.”

The survey’s component of inventories jumped 19.4 points to 66.67 in October, while the barometer of exports tumbled to 31.25 from 45.83.

The measure of new orders, a proxy of future activity, fell again to 52.69 from 56.98 last month, while its production gauge slipped into contraction territory to 47.77 this month from 51.49.

The gauge of prices retreated to 80.00 from 88.89, while the employment gauge slipped to 50.66 from 51.07.

Reporting by Richard Leong; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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