Rob Carnell, Chief International Economist at ING, suggests that in the US at least one bit of activity data has bucked the recent weaker trend, though utilities played a large role and vehicles continue to outperform. Key Quotes “Helping to offset recent concern about the pace of US activity, US January industrial production managed a respectable 0.9% MoM increase, though remains 0.7% lower than a year ago. Manufacturing rose by 0.5% MoM, helped by another robust rise in auto production, and stripping this out, the rise would have been a more modest 0.3% MoM. Vehicle production remains by far the strongest element of production right now, and is helped by cheap financing and low gasoline prices. The snow storms at the end of January in the North East will also have helped lift utility production by 5.4% MoM, following a warmer than usual winter up until then, that saw utilities production fall in the previous three months. And finally, the bad run of mining data ended with a flat monthly reading, after four consecutive declines. We wouldn’t attach much weight to this being the start of a new trend though, whilst commodity prices remain so low. With Treasury yields rising anyway, this result will probably help give them a further upwards nudge.” For more information, read our latest forex news.