Orders excluding the volatile transportation category increased 0.5 percent in April as bookings for primary metals, electrical equipment, appliances and components and capital goods rose. That was the third straight month of gains.
Unfilled orders at factories increased 0.9 percent, the largest gain since November. Order backlogs have increased in 12 of the last 13 months.
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The department also said orders for durable goods, manufactured products expected to last three years and more, rose 0.6 percent instead of the 0.8 percent gain reported last month.
Durable goods orders excluding transportation increased 0.3 percent instead of the previously reported 0.1 percent gain.
Orders for non-defense capital goods excluding aircraft—seen as a measure of business confidence and spending plans—fell 1.2 percent as reported last month.