The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia reported an increase in the index of manufacturing activity in the region to 13.7 points in March from 4.1 points in the previous month. Economists had not predicted such a significant increase in the index. According to their estimates, the index was expected at 4.5 points. The recovery of the index in March after its decline a month earlier was supported by the growth of the indicators of new orders and deliveries. The first indicator rose to 2.4 points from 1.9 points, and the second jumped to 20 points from 5.3 points. The indicator of the number of employees dropped to 9.6 points from 14.5 points. The index of future total activity, falling to 21.8 points from 31.3 points, showed the lowest level since January.
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