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Industrial production and capacity utilization data for December 2014 are now available.
Industrial production decreased 0.1 percent in December after rising 1.3 percent in November. The decrease in December reflected a sharp drop in the output of utilities, as warmer-than-usual temperatures reduced demand for heating; excluding utilities, industrial production rose 0.7 percent. Manufacturing posted a gain of 0.3 percent for its fourth consecutive monthly increase. The index for mining increased 2.2 percent after falling in the previous two months. At 106.5 percent of its 2007 average, total industrial production in December was 4.9 percent above its level of a year earlier. For the fourth quarter of 2014 as a whole, industrial production advanced at an annual rate of 5.6 percent, with widespread gains among the major market and industry groups. Capacity utilization for the industrial sector decreased 0.3 percentage point in December to 79.7 percent, a rate that is 0.4 percentage point below its long-run (1972-2013) average.