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Metalforming manufacturing companies anticipate a spike in business conditions: report

December 21, 2017 - Metalforming manufacturing companies anticipate a spike in business conditions during the next three months, according to the December 2017 Precision Metalforming Association (PMA) Business Conditions Report. Prepared monthly, the report is an economic indicator for manufacturing, sampling 120 metalforming companies in the United States and Canada.

The December report shows that 48 percent of participants expect an improvement in economic activity during the next three months (up from 30 percent in November). Another 47 percent forecast no change (compared to 54 percent the previous month) and only 5 percent believe that economic activity will decline (down from 16 percent in November).

“Manufacturers are feeling optimistic going into the new year,” said PMA President Roy Hardy. “Metalfoming companies are hopeful that changes to the U.S. tax code will bring more certainty and stability, putting them in a better position to make investments in their businesses, add more workers, and compete in the global market. As Congress turns to implementation of tax reform, manufacturers hope that they will prioritize support for our industry.”

Metalforming companies also forecast an upturn in incoming orders during the next three months, with 55 percent predicting an increase in orders (up substantially from 32 percent in November), 36 percent anticipating no change (down from 49 percent in November), and 9 percent expecting a decrease in orders (down from 19 percent in November).

Current average daily shipping levels dipped in December. Twenty-nine percent of participants report that shipping levels are above the levels of three months ago (compared to 39 percent in November), 52 percent report that levels are the same (up from 46 percent the previous month), and 19 percent report a decrease in shipping levels (up from 15 percent in November).

The percentage of metalforming companies with a portion of their workforce on short time or layoff rose to 5 percent in December, up from only 1 percent in November. This figure is better than during December 2016, when 11 percent of companies reported workers on short time or layoff.

Full report results are available here >

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