Orders for long-lasting U.S. factory goods, excluding the volatile transportation category, fell in July for the fourth time in five months, a sign that manufacturing may be faltering.
The Commerce Department says orders for durable goods rose a seasonally adjusted 4.2 percent in July.
But excluding aircraft and other transportation goods, orders dropped 0.4 percent.
Aircraft orders soared 54 percent. Durable goods are items meant to last at least three years.
Orders for so-called core capital goods, a key measure of business investment plans, fell 3.4 percent.
That's the biggest drop since November and the fourth decline in five months.
Core capital goods include computers, industrial machinery and steel. The steady decline in such orders suggests that companies are worried that the economy will slow and are reducing investment.