The USMTO report has long been an optimistic indicator of economic progress for manufacturers. The fact that the 2011 totals continue to show improvement over 2010 is fantastic news, but not entirely unexpected. On a month-to-month level, the report show constriction in manufacturing technology orders throughout November, which follows a drop in October as well. This could be attributed to a year's-end cooldown, but we're hoping it's not indicative of a larger decline in the industry as 2012 approached and progresses.
In some ways, it's too bad the USMTO report for a given month isn't available until a month-and-a-half after the fact, as right now, we're curious about how the December report will read. With a good deal of trumpeting about the unemployment rate and new jobs, it will be interesting if this report follows suit.
November U.S. manufacturing technology orders totaled $430.17 million according to AMTDA, the American Machine Tool Distributors’ Association and AMT—The Association For Manufacturing Technology. This total, as reported by companies participating in the USMTO program, was down 6.9 percent from October but up 26.6 percent when compared with the total of $339.68 million reported for November 2010. With a year-to-date total of $4,956.51 million, 2011 is up 73.9 percent compared with 2010.
These numbers and all data in this report are based on the totals of actual data reported by companies participating in the USMTO program.
“Manufacturing technology orders slowed slightly in November, but maintained their sprint toward the 2011 finish line thanks to the bonus depreciation tax incentive,” said Peter Borden, AMTDA President. “The order slowdown in metal cutting equipment was countered by acceleration in the fabricating sector and contributed to an increase over 2010 of nearly 75 percent. Backlogs for 2012 are very healthy at this point and growing longer.”
The United States Manufacturing Technology Orders (USMTO) report, jointly compiled by the two trade associations representing the production and distribution of manufacturing technology, provides regional and national U.S. orders data of domestic and imported machine tools and related equipment. Analysis of manufacturing technology orders provides a reliable leading economic indicator as manufacturing industries invest in capital metalworking equipment to increase capacity and improve productivity.
U.S. manufacturing technology orders are also reported on a regional basis for five geographic breakdowns of the United States.
At $64.88 million, November manufacturing technology orders in the Northeast Region were down 1.8 percent when compared with the $66.09 million total for October and down 1.4 percent when compared with November a year ago. The year-to-date total of $743.95 million is 38.9 percent more than the comparable figure for 2010.
November manufacturing technology orders in the Southern Region totaled $51.77 million, 4.0 percent less than October’s $53.91 million but 17.3 percent more than the November 2010 total. With a year-to-date total of $619.34 million, 2011 is up 55.5 percent when compared with 2010 at the same time.
Midwest Region manufacturing technology orders in November stood at $141.29 million, 5.0 percent less than the October total of $148.77 million but up 22.1 percent when compared with last November. At $1,663.63 million, the 2011 year-to-date total is 94.0 percent more than the comparable figure for 2010.
Manufacturing technology orders in the Central Region in November totaled $125.10 million, down 9.6 percent from October’s $138.31 million but up 56.4 percent when compared with the November 2010 figure. The $1,354.89 million year-to-date total is 81.9 percent higher than the total for the same period in 2010.
Western Region manufacturing technology orders totaled $47.14 million in November, 14.6 percent less than the $55.17 million total for October but 34.3 percent higher than the tally for November 2010. At $574.70 million, 2011 year-to-date is up 83.5 percent when compared with last year at the same time.