The Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City released the March Manufacturing Survey today. According to Chad Wilkerson, vice president and economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, the survey revealed that Tenth District manufacturing activity declined sharply from a month ago, and expectations for future activity fell to levels last seen in early 2009.
“Regional factory activity contracted sharply in March as firms were negatively impacted by COVID-19,” said Wilkerson. “Many firms indicated overall demand and sales have slowed dramatically, with capital investments being put on hold. Around 60 percent of manufacturers faced delayed payments from customers and 54 percent had concerns about cash availability.”
The month-over-month composite index was -17 in March, the lowest composite reading since April 2009, and down considerably from 5 in February and -1 in January. The composite index is an average of the production, new orders, employment, supplier delivery time, and raw materials inventory indexes.
The last of the regional surveys for March will be released on Monday (Dallas Fed), and I expect the Texas region will be hit hard.