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Durable goods orders dropped in March

April 25, 2012 at 12:28 PM

WASHINGTON, April 25 (UPI) -- U.S. durable goods orders dropped 4.1 percent in March, falling farther than the consensus forecast, the Commerce Department said Wednesday.

New orders dropped, while February's estimate of 2.2 percent growth was revised to a 1.9 percent increase.

In March, new orders rose by $8.8 billion to $202.6 billion.

Transportation orders in March had the largest decrease, falling by $7.1 billion or 12.5 percent to $49.7 billion.

Excluding transportation, orders were down 1.1 percent, which shows the volatile category of transportation dragged down the rest of the manufacturing sector.

Orders for commercial airplane parts, down $7.7 billion, provided the bulk of the decline in the transportation sector.

Orders for new capital goods not related to defense fell by $8.6 billion or 10.5 percent to $73 billion, while inventories of durable goods, up 27 consecutive months, rose by 0.4 percent to $375.1 billion.

Although orders were down, shipments rose by $2 billion or 1 percent to $208.8 billion.

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