Total industrial production increased 1.4% month-over-month in January (Briefing.com consensus 0.4%) following an unrevised 0.1% decline in December. The capacity utilization rate jumped to 77.6% (Briefing.com consensus 76.8%) from an upwardly revised 76.6% (from 76.5%) in December.
The key takeaway from the report is that the increase was driven predominately by the output of utilities, which saw its largest increase (9.9%) in the history of the index, which dates back to 1972.
Manufacturing output increased 0.2% after decreasing 0.1% in December. Motor vehicle assemblies decreased 1.3% month-over-month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 9.35 million units.
Mining production was up 1.0% after increasing 1.5% in December.
The output of utilities surged 9.9%, after declining 1.8% in December, as significantly colder-than-normal temperatures increased demand for heating.
Total industrial production was up 4.1% yr/yr. The capacity utilization rate of 77.6% was 1.9 percentage points below its long-run average.