Investing.com – Industrial production in the U.S. rose much more than expected in December, bolstering optimism over the health of the economy, although manufacturing output was weaker than forecast, official data showed on Wednesday.
In a report, the Federal Reserve said that industrial production increased by 0.9% in December from the previous month, compared to expectations for a rise of just 0.4% and a decline of 0.1% in November that was revised from an initial 0.2% increase.
Meanwhile, manufacturing production increased by a seasonally adjusted 0.1% last month, missing forecasts for a 0.3% rise and following the 0.3% advance registered in November that was revised up from an initial increase of 0.2%.
The report also showed that the capacity utilization rate, a measure of how fully firms are using their resources, increased to 77.9% in December, above the forecast for a reading of 77.3% and compared to 77.2% a month earlier that was revised up from 77.1%.
Following the report, EUR/USD trading at 1.2221 from around 1.2218 ahead of the release of the data, GBP/USD was at 1.3800 from 1.3799 previously, while USD/JPY traded at 110.75 versus 110.80 earlier.
The US dollar index, which tracks the greenback against a basket of six major rivals, was at 90.44 compared to 90.47 before the report.
Meanwhile, U.S. stock futures pointed to a higher open. The Dow futures gained 120 points, or 0.46%, the S&P 500 futures rose 9 points, or 0.32%, while the Nasdaq 100 futures traded up 27 points, or 0.40%.
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