Earlier today we reported that producer prices in May rose primarily as a result of a jump in electricity and nat gas prices. Which is why it is somewhat surprising that Industrial Production among Utilities dropped by the most, or -1.8%, for the second month in a row, following last month's -3.2% decline. This drop was offset by an increase in Mining IP of 0.7% (a decline from April's 1.1%) and the general manufacturing production which increased by a tiny 0.1%, still the best result of the past three months. Altogether, these amounted to an unchanged print in the broader index, which printed at 98.7, same as April, and the lowest since February, not to mention below expectations of a 0.2% increase.
More importantly, that IP just posted a Q/Q decline is hardly encouraging for those claiming Bernanke is ready to remove the economy's training wheels:
Finally, looking at capacity utilization, in May total industry CU edged down 0.1 percentage point to 77.6 percent, a rate 0.2 percentage point below its level of a year earlier and 2.6 percentage points below its long-run (1972–2012) average. It was also the lowest print since October 2012. Oops.
Of course, what is bad for the economy is good for the stock market. Actually, when it comes to the stock market, everything is good for this last bastion of faith in central planning.