Dec. 21 - Orders for non-defense capital goods excluding aircraft jumped 2.7 percent last month as U.S. companies shrugged off fiscal cliff fears. Conway G. Gittens reports.
The Daily Digit today is 2.7%. Non-defense capital goods orders excluding aircraft jumped 2.7% in November, the second straight month of solid gains. The number surprised economists who expected a gain of just 0.3%. All it means is that companies were making investments last month, buying such things as machinery that are meant to last at least three years. It's a hint that worries over tighter fiscal policy may not be holding back the factory sector, or corporate spending in general, as much as feared. The reading for October was upwardly revised to a 3.2% gain from a previously reported 2.9% increase, which suggests fourth-quarter economic growth may not be as anemic as earlier thought.