FXStreet (Guatemala) - Analysts at Nomura explained that the Census Bureau reported today that total US durable goods orders declined by 5.1% in December, well below expectations (Nomura: -0.2%, Consensus: -0.7%). Key Quotes: "Transportation orders declined by 12.4% in December and, as such, orders excluding transportation were down by 1.2%. Notably, core durable goods orders (capital nondefense goods orders excluding aircrafts) declined by 4.3%, the largest decline since February 2015. Core orders provide a reasonable gauge of the underlying trend in manufacturing demand, so the sharp decline in this measure today suggests that a rebound in industrial activity is unlikely in the near term. In addition, the steep decline places additional downside risk on growth in the manufacturing sector in Q1. On specific sector details, machinery orders fell by 5.6% – a decline of this magnitude was last seen in October 2014 – as local domestic business investment will likely continue to slow. Orders of primary metals increased by a slight 0.3%, as investment in the oil and gas sector and global demand remain sluggish. Orders of computers and electronics declined by 2.0%, but demand for these goods far outperformed other categories in 2015. Shipments, which measures current activity, fell by 2.2% in December, its sharpest decline in two years, and suggests that there was a sharp dropoff in an already sluggish industrial sector at the end of 2015. In particular, shipments of non-defense capital goods excluding aircraft – an input for our GDP tracking estimate – declined by 0.2% in December. Inventories increased by a strong 0.5% in December, but this was probably just an unintended buildup, given that shipments were so weak on the month. Thus, it is likely that we will see a paring back in durable goods inventories in Q1, which would be an additional drag on Q1 GDP growth. Incoming data on manufacturing thus far in January have been negative, with the business activity indexes within the Dallas Fed, Empire State, and Philly Fed manufacturing surveys all remaining in contraction territory. The regional manufacturing surveys and the drop-off in durable goods orders support our expectation for the industrial sector to continue to weigh on activity in the near term." For more information, read our latest forex news.