FXstreet.com (Barcelona) - Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index has improved considerably in January although the employment sub-index remains at historically low levels, according to data released by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

Manufacturing activity growth continued in negative levels in January , -24.3, although it has improved from the -36.1 level posted in December. January's reading has beaten the expert's expectations of a -35 points reading.

New orders index remained very low, at -22.3, although six points above the eight-year low posted in December. The employment index fell 10 points to -39.0, the lowest reading since records are taken, in 1968.

In line with the overall slowdown, companies have reported lower prices in January, the prices -paid index has posted its record low at -27.0 while prices received have risen to -26.2 in January from a record low in December.