Area Development
The Commerce Department reported that new factory orders decreased in June for a second consecutive month, shrinking by over $5 billion, or 1.2 percent, and raising concerns about the strength of the U.S. economic recovery.

And although manufacturing has provided a bright spot in the economic rebound, Michael Bratus of Moody's notes, "The manufacturing expansion is settling into a slower rate of growth,"

President Barack Obama's export drive and the stronger dollar had provided a boost to sales of U.S. goods overseas. However, analysts note that in recent months the dollar has lost ground to the euro, making exports to Europe more expensive.