By Greg Robb
The numbers: U.S. industrial production rose 1.1% in April, the Federal Reserve reported Tuesday. This is the fourth straight monthly gain of 0.8% or greater.
The increase in April was above Wall Street expectations of a 0.5% gain, according to a survey by The Wall Street Journal.
Capacity utilization rose to 79% in April from 78.2% in the prior month. The capacity utilization rate reflects the limits to operating the nation’s factories, mines and utilities.
Economists had forecast a 78.6% rate.
Key details: Manufacturing rose 0.8% in April, matching the gain in the prior month. Increases were widespread across sectors.
Motor vehicles and parts output rose 3.9% after an 8.3% jump in the prior month. Excluding autos, total industrial output increased 0.9%.
Utilities output rose 2.4% in April after a 0.3% fall in the prior month.
Mining output, which includes oil and natural gas, rose 1.6% after a 1.9% gain in the prior month.
Big picture: Manufacturing has been a bright spot in the economy but there are new worries that moderating demand, broken supply chains and shortage s may cause the sector to slow down. The New York Fed’s Empire State factory index fell into contractionary territory in May.
Market reaction: U.S. stocks /zigman2/quotes/210598065/realtime DJIA -2.22% /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX -1.86% opened higher on Tuesday on signs the consumer spending was holding up despite higher inflation.