US factory orders rose 0.2 percent in February after 6 months of declines

Economic Indicators Associated Press

Orders to U.S. factories rose in February, breaking a six-month losing streak.

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The Commerce Department says factory orders rose 0.2 percent in February, which was the first increase since July. But the good news for February is tempered by a revision in the January figure: orders fell 0.7 percent, worse than the 0.2 percent drop the government originally reported.

U.S. manufacturers in recent months have been hurt by disappointing economic growth in major trading partners like China, Europe and Japan and by a strong dollar, which makes U.S. goods more expensive overseas.

Orders for durable goods, meant to last at least three years, fell 0.2 percent. Nondurable goods orders rose 1.8 percent, pulled up by rebounding prices for petroleum products.