NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- New York manufacturers reported a steep pick up in activity in April, according to a report released from the New York Federal Reserve Thursday.

The Empire State Manufacturing index, which is cobbled together using a survey of manufacturing executives around New York state, registered a 31.9 reading in April. The showing is a stark improvement from March when the index read 21.9, and also bettered the consensus forecast provided by Briefing.com of 24.

More specific survey readings throughout the manufacturing realm also showed an improving picture. A sub-index which measures inventories rose to 11.4 this month, which the report highlighted as a new record. The New York Fed also said the prices paid index jumped to its best showing since the end of 2008, rising by 12 points to read 41.8.

A gauge on employment numbers grew to its best mark in two years, the report said, climbing higher by 8 points to read 20.3 during the month.

New orders added 4 points to register 29.5, while a reading on shipments improved 7 points to 32.1.

--Written by Sung Moss in New York

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