Partly reflecting a spike in orders for transportation equipment, the Commerce Department released a report on Thursday showing a bigger than expected increase in new orders for U.S. manufactured goods in the month of January.
The Commerce Department said factory orders surged up by 2.6 percent after jumping by an upwardly revised 1.6 percent in December.
Economists had expected factory orders to advance by 2.1 percent compared to the 1.1 percent increase originally reported for the previous month.
The report said orders for durable goods shot up by 3.4 percent in January, led by the 7.7 percent spike in orders for transportation equipment. Orders for non-defense aircraft and parts soared by 389.9 percent.
Orders for non-durable goods also showed a notable increase, jumping by 1.9 percent in January following a 2.0 percent surge in December.
The Commerce Department also said shipments of manufactured goods climbed by 1.9 percent in January following a 2.1 percent increase in December.
Inventories of manufactured goods showed a more modest increase, inching up by 0.1 percent in January after rising by 0.3 percent in December.
The inventories-to-shipments ratio subsequently dipped to 1.36 in January from 1.38 in the previous month.