Manufacturing activity continued to grow this month with new orders, shipments and employment all gaining ground, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
Thirty-six percent of companies reported increased activity in September and 63 percent expected increases over the next six months, according to the fed's Business Outlook Survey.
The survey's index of general activity actually edged down slightly in the past month, but other indicators such as the indexes in new orders, shipments and employment increased significantly, according to the survey.
Forty percent of companies said new orders increased last month, while just 13 percent said they decreased. Meanwhile, 36 percent of companies said shipments increased.
Twenty-three percent of companies said they hired workers, and 69 percent said they kept staffing levels the same. Just 7.6 percent said they reduced their workforce in the past month.
In the next six months, 53 percent of companies said they planned to keep their workforce the same and more than 9 percent said they would cut staff.
The Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia covers Delaware, southern New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania, including the midstate.