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May 15, 2014 8:55 AM, EDT
Manufacturing in New York Area Rises in May
Craig Warga/Bloomberg News

Manufacturing activity in the New York region increased in May, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York said.

The “Empire State Index,” generally the first economic indicator in a given month, rose to a 19.01 reading from 1.29 in April, the regional Fed said.

Economists had called for a reading of 6 in May, Bloomberg News reported. Readings greater than zero show expansion.

New orders increased to a reading of 10.44, the highest level since January, following a -2.77 reading in April.

“No denying this is a good report,” said Joseph Brusuelas, a Bloomberg economist. The May reading “points to modest growth ahead,” he added.

The overall index is well above the post-recession average of 7.6 and nearing the 20.53 average of 2004-2007, Bloomberg reported.

Manufacturing is one of trucking’s largest and most important customers.