PMA Survey: Business Conditions Improve in August

Written by Sandy Williams

Metalforming companies across the country reported a slight improvement in business conditions in August but are still expecting the next few months to be challenging, according to the latest survey by the Precision Metalforming Association.

Most metalforming companies (45 percent) are expecting no change in economic activity in the next three months, while 38 percent expect better conditions. Incoming orders are expected to improve from the last three months, said 55 percent of participants, compared to 52 percent in July.

Average daily shipping levels compared to three months ago improved for 52 percent of surveyed companies in August, up from 35 percent in July. Fewer companies had workforce on short time or layoff in August. The employment measure decreased to 37 percent from 46 percent in July.

“While there are glimpses of improvement, the August PMA Business Conditions Report shows the continued uncertainty that metalforming companies are experiencing due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said PMA President David Klotz. “Our members are showing amazing resiliency, but it’s clear that it will be some time before the economy fully recovers, and we expect there to be ups and downs the remainder of the year.”

PMA stressed that continued government stimulus is necessary to support continued growth in the industry.

Said Klotz, “PMA urges Congress and the White House to come together on an economic recovery package that reflects our members’ policy priorities: create long-term low-interest loans to purchase raw materials and equipment, business liability protection as they follow government guidelines, and an immediate claim of General Business Credits and expanding the Employee Retention Credit to the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) recipients.”

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