The stock market enters 2012 on a tear, up by 242 points by 10.30 am (EST) on the first day of trading in 2012. The advance in the Dow was also mirrored on the Nasdaq (up 56 points) and the S&P 500 (up 25 points).
The surge in the markets is partly due to the latest manufacturing numbers from the Institute for Supply Management (ISM), released today.
The report shows that economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in December for the 29th consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 31st consecutive month.
Bradley J. Holcomb, CPSM, CPSD, chair of the Institute for Supply Management Manufacturing Business Survey Committee had this to say;
“The PMI registered 53.9%, an increase of 1.2% from November’s reading of 52.7%, indicating expansion in the manufacturing sector for the 29th consecutive month.
The New Orders Index increased 0.9% from November to 57.6%, reflecting the third consecutive month of growth after three months of contraction.
Prices of raw materials continued to decrease for the third consecutive month, with the Prices Index registering 47.5%, which is 2.5% higher than the November reading of 45%. Manufacturing is finishing out the year on a positive note, with new orders, production and employment all growing in December at faster rates than in November, and with an optimistic view toward the beginning of 2012 as reflected by the panel in this month’s survey.”
This strong showing may be a portent of a more muscular U.S economy in 2012, providing of course, other issues, such as the Eurozone do not create a global crisis in the ointment during the year.