PMA Expects Steady but Positive Economic Conditions in Next Three Months

Written by Sandy Williams

Metalforming companies are predicting little change in economic conditions in the next three months, according to data from the May 2014 Precision Metalforming Association (PMA) Business Conditions Report. Incoming orders are also expected to remain relatively unchanged during the period.

Current daily shipping levels declined in May compared to three months ago according to those surveyed. When compared with levels from a year ago, 45 percent say shipping levels are higher. The percentage of companies with workforce on short time or layoff declined to 7 percent from 8 percent last month.

“PMA’s manufacturing members are very positive about current business conditions, with 45% reporting that shipment activity is up vs one year ago, 34% reporting unchanged shipping levels and 21% reporting shipping levels below one year ago (among the lowest percentage in the past two years),” said William E. Gaskin, PMA president. “Some 93% of metalforming companies expect the general economic outlook for next three months to be positive, consistent with the most recent PMI reading of 54.9% for manufacturing (up 1.2% from the prior month). The April PMI report also noted that two of the largest consuming markets for metal parts and components—transportation equipment and fabricated metal products—ranked as the sixth and seventh most positive manufacturing sectors out of the 17 sectors tracked. The typical PMA member experienced 8% higher shipments in Q-1 of 2014 vs 2013, with 10% growth in March vs February, according to PMA’s separate Monthly Orders and Shipments Report.”

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