Financial Report: U.S. manufacturing sector weakens additional in November – ISM

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Weak exports and business caution is hammering the U.S. manufacturing sector.

The numbers: The Institute for Supply Management said its manufacturing index sank to 48.1% in November from 48.3% in October. Economists surveyed by MarketWatch had forecast the index to total 49.2%.

Readings below 50% indicate business conditions are getting worse.

What happened: The indexes measuring new orders and employment both weakened in November.

What is the ISM saying? “Global trade remains the most significant cross-industry issue,” said Timothy Fiore, chair of the ISM’s manufacturing business survey committee.

Big picture: Weak export growth and caution among business leaders is hitting the manufacturing sector hard. There had been hope that manufacturing was stabilizing but today’s data throws that theory into questions.

Market reaction: Stocks turned negative after the ISM report with the Dow Jones Industrial Average

DJIA, -0.42%

  down 132 points and the S&P 500 Index

SPX, -0.52%

 down 10 points in early morning trading.

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