- Orders for capital goods in August rose 1.7%. Core capital goods (nondefense ex-aircraft) jumped 0.9%. This points to a strengthening of business confidence and reflects a monthly upswing in civilian aircraft orders, up 45%. Motor vehicles which had been weakening showed a 1.5% gain for orders and a 1.9% rise in shipments. Communications equipment also jumped with orders up 4.0%. Other readings include a moderate 0.3% rise for both total shipments and inventories that keeps the inventory-to-shipments ratio steady at 1.69.
- Adobe Systems Inc., a leading provider of graphic design software and digital media, reported earnings of $1.10 per share, an increase of 46.7% over year-earlier earnings of $0.75 per share. The firm’s earnings topped the consensus estimate of analysts by $0.09. The company reported revenues of $1.84 billion, an increase of 26.0%. Management attributed the results to strength in its cloud based subscription and digital media segments.
- Germany’s Siemens AG and France’s Alstom SA have agreed to combine their rail divisions in a $8.7 billion deal designed to stave off competition from China. The merger will give Siemens just a little over 50% control of the combined group. It represents a major breakthrough in Franco-German industrial relations just as the two countries are attempting to form a cohesive position on European political leadership. The new firm will be renamed Siemens-Alstom and will be listed in Paris. The combined group is expected to have around $18 billion in annual sales and will be better positioned to compete with industry leader CRRC Corp. of China. The companies expect to realize cost savings of $553 million after four years.