Purchases of durable goods includes items such as household appliances, aircraft, and furniture and is used to gauge the health of spending in the economy.
Orders for commercial aircraft increased 18.1 percent in April after declining 43 percent in March. Excluding transportation, orders increased 1.3 percent.
Shipments of core capital goods, often viewed as a proxy for business spending and is used to calculate quarterly GDP, dropped 1.5 percent in April, suggesting that business spending may have slowed at the beginning of the second quarter which many economists have forecasted.
Orders for non-defense related core capital goods increased 1.2 percent for April, representing the second month of gains.