Durable goods orders fell 4.2% in March, the biggest drop since January 2009, the Commerce Department said Wednesday.
The decrease followed a revised 1.9% gain in February that was smaller than previously reported, Commerce said.
Economists had expected a 1.7% decline in March, Bloomberg reported.
Excluding volatile transportation orders, bookings for goods meant to last several years decreased 1.1%, Commerce said.
Transportation equipment orders fell 12.5%, the largest decline since November 2010, Bloomberg said.
Durable goods include large items like refrigerators and air conditioners. Trucking is a major beneficiary of durable goods manufacturing, hauling both components and finished goods.