December Proves Big Month for U.S. Industrial Production

Industrial production finished the year on a strong note south of the border, according to figures released Friday morning by the U.S. Federal Reserve.

The central bank displayed figures rising 0.3% in December after a revised 0.4% gain in November, in line with estimates of economists. In the fourth quarter, industrial output rose at a 3.8% annual rate, down from 4.7% rate in the third quarter.

Manufacturing output alone rose 1.1% in December, the biggest gain in 10 months. The increase was led by a 4.7% increase in the output of motor vehicles and parts but there were gains across the board. Capacity utilization rose to 78.7% in December, the highest level in almost four years.