Businesses cut orders for durable goods in April

AP News
Posted: May 25, 2011 8:36 AM
Businesses cut orders for durable goods in April

Businesses cut back on their orders for heavy machinery, computers, autos and airplanes in April, reducing demand for long-lasting manufactured goods by the largest amount in six months.

The Commerce Department says orders for durable goods fell 3.8 percent and a key category that serves as a proxy for business investment was down 2.8 percent.

The weakness was widespread across a number of industries and likely was influenced by supply chain disruptions stemming from the Japanese earthquake in March. Demand for motor vehicles and parts, an industry heavily dependent on Japanese component parts, saw a decline in orders of 4.4 percent in April, the biggest drop since last August.