|This week||Month ago||Year ago|
|Purchasing Managers Index||52.10||52.80||58.70|
What it means: Released each month by the Institute for Supply Management, the ISM Purchasing Manager's Index is a gauge of conditions in the manufacturing sector of the economy.
How it's used: A reading above 50 indicates expansion in the manufacturing sector, while a reading below 50 indicates contraction. Changes in the manufacturing sector are a barometer for aggregate demand and can indicate a pickup or slowdown in overall economic conditions.