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FEDERAL

RESERVE

statistical

release

For immediate release
January 18, 1977

G.3 (Formerly E.5)

Capacity utilization in manufacturing increased an
estimated 0.4 per cent in December to 81.1 per cent. The increase
reflected production gains in advanced processing industries, most
notably in motor vehicles and parts. Primary processing industries
operated at generally lower utilization rates in December than in
November. After adjusting for seasonality, both primary and advanced
processing industries are estimated to have operated at about 81 per
cent of capacity in December.
Capacity utilization in materials decreased an estimated
0.2 per cent in December to 80.3 per cent. The decline in December,
as well as a decline to 80.4 per cent for the fourth quarter as a
whole, is attributable to a weakening of production in durable goods
materials, especially in basic metals. Utilization rates in both
nondurable goods materials and energy materials have changed relatively
little, on balance, in recent months.
Industrial utilization rates during 1976 generally rose at
a slower pace than in the rapid cyclical recovery phase in 1975. In
December 1976, utilization rates for both manufacturing and materials
were around 80 to 81 per cent, up 10 to 15 per cent from the lowest
rates registered in 1975.

MANUFACTURING

INDUSTRIAL

MATERIALS

PER CENT

105

ENERGY
TOTAL
85

65
100
PRIMARY PROCESSING

ADVANCED PROCESSING

I

I
1965




1068

1971

1974

1977

1968

1971

1974

1977

OUTPUT, CAPACITY AND CAPACITY UTILIZATION
Output and Capacity are Percentages of 1967 Output; Capacity Utilization is a Per Cent of Capacity.

Manufacturing
MONTHLY CAPACITY UTILIZATION
SERIES

1975

19751

I
88.01 69.6
\
\

|

1
77.4|
1
1
78.11
f
77.01

19731

1976
JUNE

MANUFACTURING, TOTAL

78.2

79.2

78.8
77.3

PRIMARY PROCESSING

93.6J

67.8

ADVANCED

1
85.41

70.5

1975
IV

1976
I

I
I

I I
I

122.5

126.7

129.4

131.1

PROCESSING

OUTPUT

MANUFACTURING,

TOTAL

AUG.

SEP.

OCT.

NOV.

DEC.

80.5

80.9

81.1

80.4

79.8

80.8

81. I

79.6

79.8

80.8

81.0

81.2

81.4

82.1

82.1

82.4

83.1

81.6

81.8

81.2

78.6

78.7

78.8

79.6

79.3

79.7

80.1

78.9

78.8

80.1

81.0

1975
IV

1976
I

I
I

II
I

IV
80.5

1
1
IVl

1

80.3

JULY

CAPACITY

131.51 159.5

160.4

11
161.3

|
1

'

II
I

162.3

1
1
IVl
|
163.21

UTILIZATION

1975
IV

1976
I

76.8

79.0

80.2

80.8

78.1

80.2

81.5

82.5

81.5

76.1

78.2

79.2

79.6

80.0

1
1

PRIMARY PROCESSING

128.9

133.4

136.6

139.3

138.71 165.0

ADVANCED PROCESSING

119.1

122.9

125.2 126.3

127.61 156.4

166.2

167.5 . 168.8

170.11

158.8

159.61

1

1
157.2

158.0

J

Industrial Material
MONTHLY CAPACITY UTILIZATION

MATERIALS. TOTAL

DURABLE

GOODS MATERIALS

BASIC METAL MATERIALS

NONDURABLE GOODS MATERIALS
TEX.t PAPER, £ CHEM. MAT.
TEXTILE MATERIALS
PAPER MATERIALS
CHEMICAL MATERIALS

ENERGY

MATERIALS

19731

1975

19751 1976

HTCHl
1

SERIES

LOU

DEC.I JAN.
1

FEB,T

MAR.

APR.

MAY

JUNE

JULY

AUG.

SEP.

OCT.

NOV.

pEC.

93.11
1
1
92.51
1
97.7!
1
1
94.61
1
94.51
1
94.41

69.7

79.3

79.7

80.1

80.8

80.8

81.2

81.6

81.0

80.3

80.5

60.3

74.0

74.3

75.4

76.6

76.5

78.5

78.9

77.8

76.8

77.0

76.2

73.8

72.9

75.5

79.1

77*7

81.9

83.5

79.2

77.6

74.3

71.0

85.9

86.3

86.2

85.5

86.0

84.9

84.7

85.4

84.7

85.1

85.1

5B.O

77.21 78.2
1
1
70.71 72.1
1
67.71 71.7
1
1
84.71 84.6
1
84.31 83.8
1
86.41 85.4

100.51

71.8

87.51

87.7

93.81
1

64.7

82.9|
1

94.61

82.7

85.11

64.3
66.1

67.8
65.5

85.3

86.1

85.6

84.6

84.8

83.8

83.6

84.4

83.7

83.7

83.9

82.2

84.0
89.9
84.3

83.4
89.8
86.0

82.2
90.9
85.2

83.7
90.1
83.3

83.3
91.9
83.4

82.2
90.2
82.6

82.2
90.4
82.1

81.1
89.1
84.0

80.2
89.5
83.3

78.2
88.5
84.2

78.5
88.4
84.2

86.2

84.6

85.0

84.2

85.2

84.9

83.9

84.4

83.5

83.6

83.9

84.6

OUTPUT

1975
IV
MATERIALS, TOTAL

122.8

1976
I
126.9

11
130.3

II
I

132.6

1
1
IVl
1

CAPACITY

1975
IV

132.11 159.2

1976
1
160.6

11
161.7

|1
I

163.1

115.1

120.8

126.1

130.7

128.61

163.1

164.4

165.5

166.7

MATERIALS

98.4

103.7

110.8

117.1

107.31 141.7

142.4

143.1

143.7

141.4

145.0

146.9

146.6

147.91 167.8

169.4

171.0

172.5

146.3

150.2

151.6

151.2

152,41 174.7

118.2
124.0
167.7

116.5
128.9
173.6

115.5 114.4
132.5 131.9
175.3 175.1

111.11 137.2
131.31 143.5
179.21 203.7

118.5

119.7

120.0

121.01

119.9

I

NOTE:

144.4|

174.11

178.3

180.1

182.01

138.2
144.6

139.0
145.7

206.2

208.7

139.8
144.7
211.2

140.61
147.91
213.71

80.6

81.3

80.4

70.6

73.5

76.2

78.4

76.6

69.4

72.8

77.4

81.5

74.3

84.3

85.6

85.9

85.0

85.0

11

II
I

IV

140.3

141.5

142.7

143.91

83.8

85.1

85.0

84.0

83.0

86.2
86.4
82.3

84.3
89.1
84.2

83.1
9O.9
84.0

81.8
89.9
82.9

79.0
86.8
83.9

85.2

85.3

84.8

84.0

84.1

1

1
1

1
1
ENERGY MATERIALS

167.8)

176.5

1
TEXTILE MATERIALS
PAPER MATERIALS
CHEMICAL MATERIALS

77.1

79.0

1

1
TEX., PAPER, C CHEM. MAT.

1976
I

1
1

1
1
NONDURABLE GOODS MATERIALS

1975
IV

1

1
BASIC METAL

164.31

UTILIZATION

1
1

1
1
DURABLE GOODS MATERIALS

1
1
IVl
1

139.1

1

ESTIMATES OF ACTUAL OUTPUT AND CAPACITY OUTPUT ARE BOTH EXPRESSED AS PERCENTAGES OF 1967 ACTUAL OUTPUT. ESTIMATES OF
CAPACITY UTILIZATION IN PER CENT ARE CALCULATED AS RATIOS OF (1) THE INDEXES OF INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION TO 12) THE CORRESPONDING INDEXES OF CAPACITY. INDUSTRIAL MATERIALS ARE THOSE CRUDE AND SEMIFINISHED PRODUCTS THAT ARE BOTH PRODUCED AND USED
AS INPUTS BY INDUSTRIAL ESTABLISHMENTS; THE INDUSTRIAL M A T E R I A L S INCLUDE MOST OF THE COMPONENTS OF THE P R I M A R Y PROCESSING
GROUPING OF MANUFACTURING AS W E L L AS THE INPUTS SUPPLIED TO THE INDUSTRIAL SECTOR BY MINES AND UTILITIES—SUCH AS IRON O R E ,
CRUDE OIL, AND INDUSTRIAL ELECTRICITY. THE 1973 HIGHS (AND ALSO 1975 LOWS) IN CAPACITY UTILIZATION, SHOWN IN THE TABLES
ABOVE, ARE SPECIFIC TO EACH SERIES AND MAY OCCUR IN DIFFERENT MONTHS.
BUSINESSES U S U A L L Y OPERATE AT CAPACITY UTILIZATION R A T E S THAT ARE WELL BELOW 100 PER CENT; NONE OF THE BROAD AGGREGATE SERIES
HAS EVER INDICATED A 100 PER CENT USE OF CAPACITY. CAPACITY UTILIZATION R A T E S A V E R A G E D ABOUT 83 PER CENT FOR MANUFACTURING
FROM 1955 THROUGH 1975, AND ABOUT 86 PER CENT FOR INDUSTRIAL M A T E R I A L S FOR 1967 THROUGH 1975. IN M A N U F A C T U R I N G AS A WHOLE,
UTILIZATION R A T E S AS HIGH AS 90 PER CENT HAVE B E E N EXCEEDED ONLY IN W A R T I M E . THE PEAK R A T E S OF U T I L I Z A T I O N IN 1973 W E R E
ASSOCIATED WITH S I G N I F I C A N T U P W A R D P R E S S U R E S ON PRICES.
THE C A P A C I T Y UTILIZATION ESTIMATES ARE DESCRIBED, AND HISTORICAL DATA ARE PROVIDED, IN THE N O V E M B E R 1976 ISSUE OF THE F E D E R A L
RESERVE ftULLfXUt. THE PRODUCTION FIGURES ARE D E S C R I B E D IN THE JUNE 1976 ISSUE OF THE BULLETIN; C U R R E N T E S T I M A T E S ARE
PUBLISHED IN THE FEDERAL R E S E R V E S T A T I S T I C A L R E L E A S E , INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION. G.12.3.