New U.S. orders for long-lasting manufactured goods fell for a sixth consecutive month to a six-year low in January, a government report showed on Thursday, as a global slump crimped exports and domestic spending faltered.
The decline in durable goods orders and its major components was much more than expected.
The Commerce Department said durable goods orders dropped 5.2 percent to $163.8 billion in January, the lowest level since December 2002. Orders for the prior month were revised down to a drop of 4.6 percent, previously reported as a 3 percent contraction.
New orders excluding transportation dropped 2.5 percent in January, while motor vehicles and parts fell 6.4 percent.
Non-defense capital goods orders excluding aircraft, a closely watched proxy for business spending, fell 5.4 percent in January. The previous month was revised to show a 5.8 percent plunge, previously reported as a 3.2 percent drop.
Analysts polled by Reuters had expected overall new orders to fall 2.5 percent in January and orders excluding transportation to drop 2.1 percent.
(Reporting by Lucia Mutikani; Editing by Neil Stempleman)