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New York Fed Manufacturing Index Falls in September

Manufacturing in New York State slowed more than expected in September, the New York Federal Reserve said Monday, in a report that gave a mixed picture of the region's factory sector.

The New York Fed's "Empire State" general business conditions index slumped to 14.70 from 25.06 in August for the lowest reading since 8.03 in May.

It was also below the median forecast of economists polled by Reuters, who had expected a result of 18.00. The data gave conflicting signals, however, with weakness in new orders and shipments offset by firmer price data and employment.

The new orders index fell to 13.56 from 22.21 in August, while the reading on shipments tumbled to 5.09 from 28.82. The index on the number of employees rose to 18.22 from 11.62. The reading on employment was the highest since December 2006. The prices paid component rose to 35.11 from 34.41.

The survey of manufacturing plants in the state is one of the earliest monthly guideposts to U.S. factory conditions. After the report, stock index futures continued to indicate a lower start on Wall Street and the dollar was little changed against the euro. Government bond prices, which usually gain on signs of economic weakness, were lower on the day.