Area Development
New orders for durable goods manufactured in the United States dropped 4.5 percent for the month of August, the largest drop since January, according to figures from the U.S. Department of Commerce. The decline was considerably worse than the 1.6 to 2 percent average prediction from industry analysts, and came after modest increases over the prior three months. Excluding transportation equipment, orders dropped 3 percent, the largest drop since January 2007; industry analysts had predicted a 0.5 percent decline. Orders for commercial aircraft fell by 38 percent, the largest drop in any category in the past year; orders for automobiles by 8.1 percent. Durable goods are big-ticket items meant to last three or more years.