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Metalforming Companies Expecting Slight Downturn

Thu, 06/19/2014 - 10:49am
Precision Metalforming Association (PMA)

Cleveland, OH — According to the June 2014 Precision Metalforming Association (PMA) Business Conditions Report, metalforming companies expect a slight downturn in business conditions during the next three months. Conducted monthly, the report is an economic indicator for manufacturing, sampling 124 metalforming companies in the United States and Canada.

The June report shows that 31% of participants predict that economic activity will improve during the next three months (down from 33% in May), 54% expect that activity will remain unchanged (down from 60% last month) and 15% believe that economic activity will decline (up from 7% in May).

Metalforming companies also forecast a dip in incoming orders during the next three months, with 37% predicting an increase in orders (compared to 43% in May), 45% expecting no change (up from 43% in May) and 18% predicting a decrease in orders (up from 14% in May).

Current average daily shipping levels declined in June. Thirty-five percent of participants report that shipping levels are above levels of three months ago (down from 45% in May), 46% report that levels are the same as three months ago (up from 40% last month), and 19% report a decrease in shipping levels (up from 15% in May).

The percentage of metalforming companies with a portion of their workforce on short time or layoff increased to 8% in June, up from 7% in May. The June 2014 figure is improved from one year ago when 12% of companies reported workers on short time or layoff.

“The modest shift downward in the expectations of PMA members for the June through August period is consistent with a fairly typical manufacturing cycle in the metalforming industry, with a summer slowdown during July. This pattern likely is the primary cause of the downward shift reflected in PMA’s June Business Conditions Report,” said William E. Gaskin, PMA president. “Recent feedback from members during executive roundtables in the Twin Cities and Indiana, and reports of business conditions during PMA’s recent Board of Directors meeting, indicates that orders and shipments remain stable with modest growth anticipated during the balance of the year, unless global security issues escalate to the extent that they lead to a disruptive situation for the overall U.S. or global economy.”

The monthly Business Conditions Report has been conducted by PMA since 1979. Full report results are available at http://www.pma.org/public/business_reports/pdf/BCREP.pdf. PMA is the full-service trade association representing the $113-billion metalforming industry of North America—the industry that creates precision metal products using stamping, fabricating, spinning, slide forming and roll forming technologies, and other value-added processes. Its nearly 900 member companies also include suppliers of equipment, materials and services to the industry. PMA leads innovative member companies toward superior competitiveness and profitability through advocacy, networking, statistics, the PMA Educational Foundation, FABTECH and METALFORM Mexico tradeshows, and MetalForming and Fabricating Product News magazines.

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