Statewide manufacturing activity “grew at a faster pace than in recent months” according to the NY Federal Reserve’s February Empire State Manufacturing Survey. The General Business Conditions index rose to 12.9, up 8.1 points from January, its highest reading since last July. In particular, New Orders (+15.5 to 22.1), Shipments (+10.3 to 18.9), Delivery Times (+11.0 to 8.3) and Inventories (+13.6 to 12.9) were up sharply, while Prices Paid (-6.5 to 25.0), Number of Employees (-2.4 to 6.6) and Average Employee Workweek (-2.3 to -1.0) slowed. “Optimism about future conditions was somewhat restrained” according to the Survey as the Index for future conditions six-months from now slid to 22.9, down -0.7 points from last month. See the full report here.