By Greg Robb
The Chicago Business Barometer — also known as the Chicago PMI — measuring Midwest manufacturing activity, softened to 56 in June from 60.3 in the prior month.
Economists polled by the Wall Street Journal had forecast a 58 reading.
The index is produced by the ISM-Chicago with MNI. It is released to subscribers three minutes before its release to the public at 9:45 am Eastern.
The Chicago PMI is the last of the regional manufacturing indices before the national ISM data for June is released on Friday.
Economists surveyed by the Journal have forecast a 54.3% reading for the closely watched ISM manufacturing index in June after a 56.1% reading in the prior month.
So far this month, the regional manufacturing surveys released by Federal Reserve banks have shown a deterioration in business sentiment even as measures of activity have been positive.
“Overall, manufacturing output continues to expand but faces risk from not only supply dislocations and shortages but also slowing demand going forward,” said Rubeela Farooqi, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics.
Stocks (DOW:DJIA) (S&P:SPX) were sharply lower Thursday on increased concern about a possible recession.