By MARTIN CRUTSINGER
AP Economics Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Businesses stepped up their orders for long-lasting manufactured goods in November. And a key category that signals business investment plans climbed at the fastest pace in 10 months.
The Commerce Department says orders for durable goods jumped 3.5 percent in November compared with October, when orders had fallen 0.7 percent. The increase was led by a 21.8 percent jump in demand for commercial aircraft, which can be volatile.
Core capital goods, a category that tracks business investment, rose 4.5 percent, the biggest gain since January. This category is seen as a gauge of business plans to expand and modernize and as a measure of business confidence.
Various barometers have signaled strength in manufacturing, which should translate into support for the overall economy going into 2014.
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