1. At the macroeconomic level, many areas of government would probably be interested in this statistic because it gives an idea of how much capacity is currently available to produce goods versus how much is actually being used. At the microeconomic level, firms may be interested in comparing their capacity utilization to the rest of the industry.
2. This statistic is collected and published by the Federal Reserve Board on a monthly basis.
3. Capacity Utilization for the United States in 2009 was 71.1%. The average from 1972 to 2009 is 80.6%. Since 1972, capacity utilization hasn't gone much higher than 85% , and the low was 68.2% in 2008.