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Durable Goods Orders Rise Unexpectedly

New orders for durable goods rose 1.3 percent in July, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. Strong civilian aircraft sales accounted for the largest portion of the gain, with transportation orders up 3.1 percent, the largest gain since February. Orders for machinery and primary and fabricated metals were also up, while orders for computers and appliances were lower. Industry analysts had predicted that orders would remain flat. The increase follows a revised increase of the same amount for June. In addition, orders for non-defense capital goods excluding aircraft, a measure of future business investment, rose 2.6 percent, the largest increase since April. Shipments of those items, a figure used to calculate gross domestic product, rose 0.6 percent.

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