Economy Briefs

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Orders to factories totaled $440.4 billion in April on a seasonally adjusted basis. That’s 31.1 percent higher than the recession low hit in March 2009.

Manufacturing has been one of the strongest areas of the economy since the recession ended. But it has shown signs of slowing in recent months. On Wednesday the Institute of Supply Management reported that its index of manufacturing activity expanded in May at the slowest pace in 20 months.

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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