The Empire Manufacturing Index plunged to 5.08 on expectations of 18, and previously at 19.57! The stunning drop was driven by a contraction in virtually all diffusion categories: New Orders (10.13 from 17.53), Shipments (6.31 from 19.67), Unfilled Orders (-15.87 from -1.23), Delivery Time (-7.94 from 9.88), Prices Paid (25.40 from 27.16), Prices Received (-1.59 from 4.94), and Average Employee Workweek (-9.52 from 8.64). Only inventories increased marginally (we may have seen this before), from -1.23 to 6.35. All in all a disaster. Elsewhere the PPI also plunged much more than expected, coming in at -0.5 on expectations of -0.1 as deflation is now pervasive. In all fairness, core PPI came in as expected at 0.1%. Lastly, the Initial Jobless Claims came in at 429,000 from 458,000 the week before, a number made irrelevant after various automakers announced they would continue summer production in autoplants that otherwise get shutdown for the period, thus skewing the seasonal adjustment. Indeed the Non Seasonally Adjusted number for the week surged from 468,492 to 513,347. Perhaps most relevantly for the economy, the collapse in those collecting EUC and extended benefits continues, with both categories coming in lower, at -236,162 and -18,580.