PMA Cautious About 4th Quarter 2014

Written by Sandy Williams

The September Precision Metalforming Association (PMA) Business Conditions Report reveals that metalforming companies are less optimistic about the business conditions for the next three months. The number of participants expecting economic activity to decline doubled to 14 percent from 7 percent last month, 51 percent expect no change (down from 53 percent) and 35 percent are expecting an improvement in conditions (down from 40 percent).

A dip in incoming orders is forecast for the next three months, with 49 percent expecting no change (up from 47 percent) and 16 percent expecting a decrease (compared to 10 percent in August).

“PMA member companies are somewhat cautious about the outlook for Q-4,” said William E. Gaskin, PMA president. “While orders and shipments for the first half of 2014 were up vs. 2013 by 5% and 7% respectively, in this month’s Business Conditions Survey 29% reported that current shipment activity is down compared to one year ago, up from 16% in August. Members with employees on short-time or layoff also rose in September to 10 percent, vs. 6 percent in August. Higher costs of raw material, government regulations and uncertainties due to the lack of leadership in Washington, D.C., undoubtedly are some of the reasons manufacturers express concern about near-term growth.”

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