Monday, April 26, 2010

Regarding the Durable Goods Orders

The latest durable goods orders came out last week, but there are important points to make about it. First, the overall trend was a decrease of 1.3%. But the number excluding transportation equipment showed an increase of 2.8%. And the drop in transportation equipment was caused primarily by a 67.1% drop in non-defense aircraft and parts. This particular segment of the durable goods report accounted for 5.45% of the February new orders number number and 1.81% of the March new orders number. I can't think of another time when a drop of that magnitude occurred in any part of the durable goods number. Sharp drops usually do come from the transportation section of the report, but by sharp I'm thinking along the lines of 10%. In other words, the 67% drop is very much out of the ordinary.