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Reports: US Manufacturing Rises, Construction Falls

Economic reports paint a mixed picture of the U.S. economy, with manufacturing rising and construction dropping.

Monday's report from the Institute for Supply Management says an index of manufacturing rose 2.3 percentage points in December.

Factories are apparently boosting production to meet growing demand from government stimulus programs. Demand is also helped by businesses that are rebuilding inventories that were drastically cut during the worst of the economic crisis.

A separate government report shows a very different trend. The latest figures from the U.S. Commerce Department show construction falling to the lowest level in six years.

November's data show a .6 percent decline for the month, which is the seventh drop in as many months.

Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.