July 15, 2010 / 2:14 PM / 10 years ago

Philly Fed factory activity index drops in July

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Factory activity growth in the U.S. Mid-Atlantic region fell unexpectedly this month, a survey showed on Thursday.

The Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank said its business activity index dropped to 5.1 in July from June’s 8.0.

Economists had expected a reading of 10.0, based on the results of a Reuters poll, which ranged from 4.1 to 18.0.

Any reading above zero indicates expansion in the region’s manufacturing.

The survey covers factories in eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey and Delaware.

It is seen as one of the first monthly indicators of the health of U.S. manufacturing leading up to the national report by the Institute for Supply Management, which is due next on August 2.

Reporting by Burton Frierson; Editing by Theodore d'Afflisio

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