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Workers build a Jeep Compass at the Chrysler assembly plant in Belvidere, Ill. Friday's industrial output report showed auto production jumped 4.5 percent in November, leading increases in U.S. manufacturing.
U.S. factories rebounded in November from Superstorm Sandy, boosting production of cars, equipment and appliances.
The Federal Reserve says factory output increased 1.1 percent in November from October. That offset a 1 percent decline in the previous, which was blamed on the storm.
Total industrial output at factories, mines and utilities rose also rose 1.1 percent last month.
Auto production jumped 4.5 percent to lead widespread increases in factory output. It was the first increase in production at auto plants since July. Production of primary metals, wood products, electrical equipment and appliances all showed gains.
The increase in production is a hopeful sign that companies may not be panicking yet about possible tax increases that are set to take effect next month without a budget deal in Washington.