US manufacturing activity contracted for the first time since the recovery began. The M-PMI fell an unexpected 3.8 points in June to 49.7, the lowest since July 2009. First, the good news: Manufacturers kept expanding payrolls at a solid pace. The employment index barely changed at 56.6, holding near April’s ten-month high of 57.3. Now for the bad: The new orders index posted its second largest one-month decline since December 1980, tumbling 12.3 points to 47.8. Slower global economic growth is depressing US factories; the new export orders index dropped 6.0 points to a three-year low of 47.5. The production index has lost 10 points since April to 51.0, the lowest since May 2009. Inflationary pressures are easing rapidly; the prices-paid index is down 24.5 points since February to 37.0.
Today's Morning Briefing: Global Soft Patch. (1) From dynamo to drag. (2) Export orders down in China and US. (3) Big dive in US M-PMI new orders. (4) Industrial commodity prices are down ytd. (5) Europe is in a recession. (6) No recession in consensus earnings estimates for S&P 500. (7) Analysts no longer cutting profit margin forecasts. (8) Is latest European Grand Plan unraveling already? (9) Happy Fourth of July! (More for subscribers.)