While the third quarter is off to a good start, declining production in the first half means that manufacturing production will grow only 0.2% this year as a whole. Communications equipment, medical equipment and supplies, and private nonresidential construction have led growth this year. The manufacturing sector’s production should speed up to a modest pace of growth in 2017 (1.6%) and 2018 (2.5%). Consumer-driven manufacturing markets will continue to support the sector but it is a modest rebound in investment- and material-driven manufacturing that will allow an acceleration. A key driver, mining and drilling exploration, is finally bottoming out and should return to growth in 2018.
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