U.S. manufacturing was up 0.7% in August, reversing the 0.4% decline reported in July, the Federal Reserve reported. "The sharp recovery in the [Institute for Supply Management's index of manufacturing activity] since May followed now by this surge in manufacturing output are encouraging signs that the spring soft patch in factory activity is over," said Ted Wieseman, a Morgan Stanley economist in New York. However, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York said its index of general business conditions eased to 6.29 this month from 8.24 in August. Anything above zero on the index indicates an expansion.

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