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FEDERAL

RESERVE

statistical

••??SOSF-

release

For immediate release
May 16

G.3

CAPACITY UTILIZATION: MANUFACTURING AND MATERIALS
April 1978

Capacity utilization in manufacturing increased by an estimated .5
percentage point in April to 83.2 per cent. Large gains in production of
metals and of motor vehicles and parts accounted for more than half of the
overall rise. Increases in production of machinery also contributed to the
rise in manufacturing operating rates. The operating rate for the advanced
processing sector rose by .5 percentage point to 82.6 per cent, and the rate
for the primary processing sector increased by .6 percentage point to 84.6
per cent.
Utilization of capacity for production of industrial materials rose
by more than 1 percentage point in April to an estimated 83.2 per cent. Large
increases in operating rates by producers of durable materials, and especially
large gains in the energy materials sector were responsible for the rise in
total materials capacity utilization. Resumption of high levels of coal production in Eastern mines was a factor in the large gain within the energy
materials sector. Nondurable goods materials utilization rates were off
slightly in April.
The April increases in capacity utilization brought rates in both
manufacturing and materials to their highest levels since October 1974.
MANUFACTURING

INDUSTRIAL

MATERIALS

PER CENT
100

TOTAL

ENERGY

—

80

I

I

I

60
100

I

NONDURABLE GOODS

PRIMARY PROCESSING

80

ADVANCED PROCESSING
DURABLE GOODS
I

60
1966




1969

1972

1975

1978

1969

I
1972

I

I

I
1975

I
1978

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

Manufacturing
MONTHLY CAPACITY UTILIZATION

19731

SERIES

1975

69.6

82.3

}

1978

82.9

.3.0!

81.7

61.8

63.8
60.5

1977

c

HIGH
MANUFACTURING, TOTAL

88.0

83. O

82.6

63.1

62.9

62.9

82.9

PRIMARY PROCESSING

93.6

66.1

64.4

65.5

65.5

65.3

65.1

64.4

64.7

84.7

1
64.51

ADVANCED PROCESSING

85.4

70.4

81.1

81.4

61.6

82.0

81.8

62.0

81.6

81.9

82.21

|
1978|

OUTPUT

1977
11

133.1

MANUFACTURING, TOTAL
PRIMARY

1
19781

1977

136.9

138.7

146.3

147.3

129.3

132.0

134.2

I
1
139.91 139.81 164.0
1
1
1
1
148.21 148.11 170.2

165.6

167.1

171. B

173.5

162.2

163.6

83.2

83.6

64.0

64.6

80.8

82.1

82.6

UTILIZATION
1977

1978

ll

1 1
1

140.1

PROCESSING

ADVANCED PROCESSING

CAPACITY

APR.
62.7

|
1
168.71 170.31 61.2
I
1
1
1
175.11 176.61 62.3
1
1
165.31 166.91 8O.5
1
1

82.7

63.0

62.9

82.1

r

65.1

84.9

64.6

63.8

61.4

81.9

82. 0

81.1

MAR.

t

135. 6L 135.4| 160.7
1
1

APR.

62.0

63.2

60.7

Industrial Materials
MONTHLY CAPACITY UTILIZATION
SERIES

1

19731
H1GH|
93.11
1
1
92. 5 f

BASIC METAL MATERIALS

NONDURABLE GOODS MATERIALS
TEX., PAPER, t, CHEM. MAI.
TEXTILE MATERIALS
PAPER MATERIALS
CHEMICAL MATERIALS

64.3

70.7

79.4

79.9

80.0

78.9

78.9

79.5

66.1

79.3

81.2

80.2

77.6

74.8

73.4

75.6

1
1
94.6k
1
94. 5 1
1
94.41
100.51
93.8 1

DURABLE GOODS MATERIALS

69.7

97.7|

MATERIALS, TOTAL

1975

67.8

87.0

67.7

67. 0

85.8

86.1

65.5

66.0

86.7

86.1

85.1

85.3

84.7

84.9

84.3

58.0

78.8
86.3

76.6
90.7

76.7
89.2

77.4
69.0

78.7

71. B

89. 7

80.3
89.1

62.9
88.3

62.7

63.9

84.5

65.6

B6.3

83.6

64.9

65.2

LOW

1977
APR.
82.1

82.7

83.0

82.9

62.0

82.4

82.0

1
01. V| 81.9
|

01.*

79.4

60.11

78.7

79.5

74.2

76.1

76.0

62.4
66.7

75.7
75.71
1
1
85.8| 65.3
|
64.5
84.01
1
62.01 60.1
65.21 68.1

64.4

1
61.4|

62.3

r

86.4

86.7

65.9

1

ENERGY MATERIALS

94.6|

OUTPUT

L

1977
1

1
1

1 1
1

133.1

137.7

138.1

DURABLE GOODS MATERIALS

129.2

135.1

136.0

BASIC METAL MATERIALS

108.6

116.4

109.4

149.5

154.6

154.4

153.9

159.9

159.2

111.3
131.7
181.6

110.9
134.3
191.8

112.3
135.1
189.5

122.0

122.6

123.4

MATERIALS, TOTAL

NONDURABLE GOODS MATERIALS
TEX., PAPER, & CHEM. MAT.
TEXTILE MATERIALS
PAPER MATERIALS
CHEMICAL MATERIALS
ENERGY MATERIALS

NOTE:

1976

IV
1
138.91
1
f
137.71
1
109.41
1
1
155.01
1
159.51
j
117.91
132.31
188.91
1
1
121.91
|

|
19781
1977
11
1
1
139.31 165.5
1
t
138.01 169.0
1
110.71 144.8
1
1
157.61 175.6
1
162.51 183.6
j
115.51 141.4
137.11 148.9
193.71 216.2
1
t
119.91 144.3
|

CAPACITY
1
1

111

166.6

167.6

170.3

171.6

145.1

145.3

177.2

178.8

185.4

187.1

141.9
150.1
218.7

142.5
151.3
221.2

144.7

145.2

I
19781
I
I
IV
1
1
166.91 170.41
|1
I
172.61. 174.01
1
I
145.51 145.81
|
1
1
180.4| 182.31
1
1
188.91 190.61
|
1
143.01 143.51
152.51 153.61
223.6| 226.6|
1
1
|
1
145.71 147.11
1
1

79.6

83.1

87.0

87.1

86.8

65.4

85.6

85.2

80.7
89.7

80.5
90.0

80.0

81.2

04.2

UTILIZATION
1977

1978

1
80.4

r

I
I
62.6

11
1
62.3

76.5

79. «.

79. i

76. O

60.2

75.3

65.1

87.2

86.3

63.8

86.3

85.1

78.7
88.4
64.0

78.1
87.7

76.8
69.3
65.7

84.5

6*t.8

65.0

89. >

1

IV
|
8^.21
t
1
79.7!
1
75. kl
1
t
85.91
I
64.51
1
82.4|
86.71
04.51
1
|
63.71

61.7

79.3
75.9

86.5
85.2
80.5
09.3
05.5

61.4

ESTIMATES OF ACTUAL OUTPUT AND CAPACITY OUTPUT ARE BOTH EXPRESSED AS PERCENTAGES OF 1967 ACTUAL OUTPUT.
ESTIMATES OF
CAPACITY UTILIZATION IN PERCENT ARt CALCULATED AS RATIOS OF 111 THE FEDERAL RESERVE'S SEASONALLY ADJUSTED INDEXES Of- INDUSTRIAL PRODUCTION TO ( 2 ) THE CORRESPONDING INDEXES OF CAPACITY.
INDUSTRIAL MATERIALS ARE ITEMS BOTH PRODUCED AND USED AS INPUTS 6Y MANUFACTURING PLANTS, MINES AND UTILITIES: INDUSTRIAL MATERIALS COVER MANY OF THE ITEMS REPRESENTED IN THE PMMARY
PROCESSING GROUPING OF MANUFACTURING AS WELL AS SOME OF THE OUTPUT OF MINES AND UTILITIES — SUCH AS IRON ORE, CRUDE OIL, AND
ELECTRICITY SOLD TO INDUSTRY.
THE 1973 HIGHS AND 1975 LOWS IN CAPACITY UTILIZATION, SHOWN IN THE TABLES ABOVE, ARE SPECIFIC TO EACH SERIES AND MAY OCCUR IN
DIFFERENT MONTHS.
INDUSTRIAL PLANTS USUALLY OPERATE AT CAPACITY UTILIZATION RATES THAT ARE WELL BELOW 1OO PERCENT; NONE OF
THE BROAD AGGREGATE SERIES HAS EVER INDICATED A 100 PERCENT USE OF CAPACITY.
CAPACITY UTILIZATION R A T E S AVERAGED ABOUT 63
PERCENT FOR MANUFACTURING FROM 1955 THROUGH 1977, AND ABOUT 85 PERCENT FOR INDUSTRIAL MATERIALS FOR 19o7 THROUGH 1977.
IN
MANUFACTURING AS A WHOLE, UTILIZATION RATES AS HIGH AS 90 PERCENT HAVE BEEN EXCEEDED ONLY IN WARTIME.
THE PEAK R A T E S OF UTILIZATION IN 1973 WERE ASSOCIATED WITH SIGNIFICANT UPWARD PRESSURE ON PRICES.
THE CAPACITY UTILIZATION ESTIMATES ARE DESCRIBED, AND HISTORICAL DATA ARE PROVIDED, IN FFDERAl REiERVfe Mt-ASuRi^ Q£ CAPACITY
ANIi CAPACITY UTIl l?ATItM<- THIS PUBLICATION MAY BE OBTAINED FROM PUBLICATION SERVICES, BOARD OF GOVERNORS OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM, WASHINGTON, D.C. 20551. THE PRICE IS SI.75 PEA COPY} FOR TEN OR MORE. *1.50 EACH.