Metalforming companies expect more economic activity and a spike in orders in the coming three months, according to the December 2013 Precision Metalforming Association (PMA) Business Conditions Report.
In the December report:
• 41% of participants expect economic activity to improve in the next three months, up from just 27% in the November report
• 46% expect activity to remain unchanged, from 58% in the November report
• 13% expect economic activity to decline, from 15% in the November report
Metalforming companies expect a spike in incoming orders in the next three months:
• 43% expect an increase in orders, from 33% in the November report
• 43% expect no change, from 45% in November
• 14% expect a decrease in orders, from 22% in November
PMA reported that average daily shipping levels were down in December 2013:
• 31% said shipping levels are above levels of three months ago, from 37% in the November report
• 43% said shipping levels are the same as three months ago, from 41% in November
• 26% said shipping levels were down, from 22% in November
9% of metalforming companies reported that they had a portion of their workforce on short time or layoff—down from 13% in the November report. The December figure of 9% is down from 17% in December 2012, and is the lowest level since July 2013.
“PMA members are quite optimistic about the first quarter of 2014, and they are especially upbeat compared to December 2012,” said William E. Gaskin, PMA president. “While current shipping trends are somewhat lower than three months ago, that is a typical end-of-year pattern, and the level of optimism for new orders is significantly more positive. A number of other positive economic reports, including the strong November ISM Purchasing Managers Index for manufacturing of 57.3, a stronger than anticipated jobs report in November and continued strength in the automotive sector, have undoubtedly fueled the optimism.”
The monthly survey samples 122 metalforming companies in the United States and Canada.
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