WASHINGTON – Factory activity in New York state contracted in June, a sign that manufacturers are still held back by a strong dollar and cutbacks in investment by oil and gas drillers.
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The Federal Reserve Bank of New York says that its Empire State manufacturing index fell to negative 2 this month, down from plus 3 in May. Any reading above zero indicates expansion.
A measure of new orders also fell into negative territory, evidence that factory output in the state will likely remain low. Shipments grew but at a slower pace. A gauge of hiring ticked up.
The dollar has risen 18 percent against a basket of international currencies in the past year. That makes U.S. goods more expensive overseas and makes imports cheaper, hurting sales in the U.S. and internationally.