Orders for U.S. durable manufactured goods unexpectedly rose in April, but a drop in a measure of business capital spending plans could temper expectations for a sharp rebound in economic growth this quarter, Reuters reported.
The Commerce Department said on Tuesday that durable goods orders increased 0.8 percent, as demand for defense capital goods surged and orders rose for fabricated metal products, transportation equipment and electrical equipment, appliances and components.
Orders for durable goods, which are items meant to last three years or more, advanced by a revised 3.6 percent in March. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast durable goods orders falling 0.5 percent last month after a previously reported 2.5 percent rise in March.
However, non-defense capital goods orders excluding aircraft, a closely watched proxy for business spending plans, fell 1.2 percent after rising by a revised 4.7 percent in March, which was the largest gain since November.
Economists had expected orders for these so-called core capital goods to rise 0.2 percent last month after a previously reported 2.9 percent jump in March. The report could cause economists to lower expectations for a sharp rise in growth in the second quarter after the economy sputtered in the first three months of the year.