New orders for U.S. manufactured goods unexpectedly edged higher in the month of September, according to a report released by the Commerce Department on Wednesday.
The report said factory orders crept up by 0.2 percent in September after surging by a downwardly revised 1.0 percent in August.
The uptick surprised economists, who had expected factory orders to edge down by 0.1 percent compared to the 1.2 percent jump originally reported for the previous month.
The unexpected increase in factory orders came as orders for non-durable goods climbed by 0.8 percent, more than offsetting a 0.3 percent drop in durable goods orders.
The Commerce Department also said shipments of manufactured goods rose by 0.6 percent in September after inching up by 0.1 percent in August.
Inventories of manufactured goods also climbed by 0.8 percent in September following a 0.7 percent increase in August.
With inventories and shipments both rising, the inventories-to-shipments ratio was unchanged from the previous month at 1.48.