Calls for factories to make goods went up in July, the U.S. Census Bureau and the Commerce Department report, but by less than analysts expected.
A fall in demand for petroleum products and other "nondurable goods" like food dragged the number down. Demand for transportation goods jumped by 18.5 percent — enough to push factory orders overall up by 1.3 percent. In a Thomson Reuters survey, analysts predicted growth of 2.2 percent.
The reports shows that people are still cutting back on their spending. The 1.9 percent drop in demand for nondurable goods is the most since December.