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U.S. industrial production unexpectedly declines in January

Investing.com -

Investing.com - Industrial production in the U.S. unexpectedly fell in January, dampening optimism over the health of the economy, official data showed on Wednesday.

In a report, the Federal Reserve said that industrial production dropped 0.3% in January, worse than expectations for a 0.1% advance.

Industrial production increased by 0.6% in December, whose figure was revised down from a previously reported gain of 0.8%.

Meanwhile, manufacturing production increased by a seasonally adjusted 0.2% last month, which was in line with both the forecast and December's advance.

The report also showed that the capacity utilization rate, a measure of how fully firms are using their resources, unexpectedly slipped to 75.3% in January from 75.6% a month earlier. December's data was revised up from an initial reading of 75.5%

Analysts had expected the rate to remain unchanged at December's initial reading of 75.5%.

After the report, EUR/USD was trading at 1.0546 from around 1.0540 ahead of the release of the data, GBP/USD was at 1.2390 from 1.2396 earlier, while USD/JPY was at 114.75 from 114.84 earlier.

The US dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was at 101.56, compared to 101.61 ahead of the report.

Meanwhile, just before the open, U.S. stock futures traded flat. The Dow futures inched up 6 points, or 0.03%, the S&P 500 futures dropped 4 points, or 0.16%, while the Nasdaq 100 futures slipped 5 points, or 0.10%.

Elsewhere, in the commodities market, gold futures traded at $1,222.55 a troy ounce, compared to $1,221.95 ahead of the data, while crude oil was at $52.98 compared to $53.01 earlier.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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