CIRAS DIGEST: Thursday, March 26, 2015

Happy Thursday from your friends at CIRAS Newswire, where we read the stuff you don’t have time for and attempt to make informed (or just plain snippy) remarks about it. Now, with extra witticism!

Here’s what we’ve collected:

  • First the numbers. The AP headline at U.S. News & World Report says it all: “China manufacturing slips to lowest level in nearly a year as new orders shrink.”
  • Meanwhile, Reuters focuses on European improvement and the Business Insider headline stresses that U.S. “Manufacturing Activity Picks up in March.”
  • But The Economist sees “Worrying Signs” in the fact that much of U.S. economic growth since 2009 has been driven by purchase of durable goods, such as cars. The article cites number showing a decline in those purchases and argues that the manufacturing resurgence might be poised to stall.
  • In news that’s less wonky but more nerdy, Stanford News has a report on the university’s discovery of a cheaper way to manufacture stuff with gallium arsenide, a semiconductor that works better than (more commonly used) silicon but is vastly more expensive. The article predicts the new process eventually could lead to faster computer chips and better solar cells.
  • And speaking of energy, folks in North Dakota appear to be getting concerned about the perpetually low state of oil prices. Reuters describes an effort to lure manufacturers there. (Nice forethought to start the promotion in Spring.)

Thanks for reading.

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