PMA Expecting Softening Conditions For Rest of 2015

Written by Sandy Williams

The Precision Metalforming Association reports that members are forecasting a slight downturn in business conditions in the next three months. The PMA Business Conditions report is a monthly economic indicator of manufacturing, sampling opinions of 127 U.S. and Canadian metalforming companies.

Average daily shipping levels are expected to decrease slightly, said metalformers, while incoming orders will see a slight increase.

Thirteen percent of metalforming companies surveyed said they have workers on short time or layoff, compared to 11 percent in August and 10 percent a year ago.

“Actual orders and shipments for the average metalforming company for the first seven months of 2015 are dead-flat vs. the same period in 2014, so the outlook expressed in the September Business Conditions Report reflects very well the first two quarters of 2015 and expectations for continued softness for the balance of 2015,” said William E. Gaskin, PMA president.

“Automotive, medical device and aerospace suppliers continue to outperform other markets, with heavy equipment, agriculture/off-highway and oilfield suppliers lagging considerably. Washington continues to send a message of uncertainty to manufacturers as a result of the ongoing stalemate in Congress on approving the 2016 budget that could lead to a return of drastic spending cuts (sequestration) in defense spending, as well as stalemates on meaningful business tax reform and re-authorization of important tax credits used by manufacturers for capital investment, bonus depreciation and R&D spending.”

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