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IndustryNet Blog

Posted by IndustryNet
A number of new reports out this month point to a growing manufacturing sector, though optimism among supply executives has been tempered by looming tariff deadlines and a challenging labor market.

The Institute for Supply Management's November Report on Business shows U.S. manufacturing activity surged over the month, and now stands at 59.3%, up 1.6% from October's reading of 57.7%.

Purchase managers surveyed by the ISM reported increased orders, even as the impact of tariffs on supply chains loomed large and skilled employees hard to find. Notable increases were seen in the new orders and production levels, with those indices well in expansion territory.

The ISM's Prices Paid Index sank 10% in November, after hitting record highs for several months. Although prices are still in expansion, with that index at 60.7, November's reading is the lowest reported by the ISM since June of 2017.

"Comments from the panel reflect continued expanding business strength," said ISM Chair Timothy Fiore. "Demand remains strong, with the New Orders index rebounding to above 60 percent." Fiore went onto describe that production and employment expanded at a faster rate in November, and that prices had finally begun to soften after months of increases, especially in metals.

Labor & tariffs, a consistent theme among manufacturing executives
Posted by IndustryNet
According to new data compiled by MNI, publisher of the U.S. industrial data that powers IndustryNet, South Carolina added manufacturing jobs for a seventh straight year.

Gains were led by the plastics and rubber industry, as well as chemicals processing, primary metals and electronics, unlike previous years, in which gains were overwhelmingly led by the transportation equipment sector.

The latest data suggests, however, that the state�s transportation equipment sector is poised for accelerated growth in the coming year, with some major operations expanding hiring in the months ahead.

Overall, South Carolina has added more than 20,000 jobs since the end of the recession, an increase of 8%. The state's transportation equipment industry accounted for a whopping 70% of the state's total manufacturing job gains, adding more than 14,000 jobs over the 7-year period -- an increase of 50%.

Posted by IndustryNet
Milling and turning machine operations are both categorized as a subtractive process. The material is removed from an object in order to create a different shape, with the difference between the two processes being how the material is removed.

When it comes to producing parts quickly with high precision, the importance of milling and turning machines cannot be understated. Utilizing the right machine, a cube can be turned into a sphere, a disc into a ring and a block of metal into an engine block.

The current size of the milling and turning market is 145 companies employing a total of 2,593 people. All companies in this space are privately owned and overwhelmingly distribute domestically. The rapid reshoring of various industries has given these companies an economic shot in the arm.

Posted by IndustryNet
After two straight months of tepid growth, U.S. manufacturing activity charged back in November as new orders, production and employment posted strong growth, according the Institute for Supply Management's latest survey of manufacturing executives.

U.S. manufacturing activity now stands at 59.3%, up 1.6% from October's reading of 57.7%.

Executives surveyed by the ISM reported an uptick in orders, despite the impact of tariffs on supply chains and raw material costs, as well as a shortage of skilled labor.

Says Tim Fiore, Chairman of the ISM: "Comments from the panel reflect continued expanding business strength. Demand remains strong, with the New Orders Index rebounding to above 60%, the Customers' Inventories Index declining and remaining too low, and the Backlog of Orders Index steady."

November's ISM report reflects a growing U.S. manufacturing sector, with this past month's 59.3% reading far beyond the 50% mark that is indicative of expansion. November stands as the 33rd consecutive month of growth in the U.S. manufacturing sector, and the 115th straight month of growth in the economy overall.

Posted by IndustryNet
This past week has seen a flurry of ups and downs for U.S. manufacturing, with some positive announcements by BMW and Samsung overshadowed by a massive cost-cutting plan unveiled by GM. We'll take a look at the GM announcement, as well as other major manufacturing headlines this week, including some major new operations breaking ground.

USMCA signed into law

Just this morning, President Trump, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto signed the U.S. Mexico Canada agreement (USMCA) as the three leaders converged in Argentina for a summit. The new trade deal is the result of sixteen months of heated negotiations between the three nations and is geared to replace the 23-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in the year 2020.

Posted by IndustryNet
Business Credit Reports, Inc. (BCR) has teamed up with Creditsafe to bring their international database of companies to BCR's credit report platform.

With a global database of over 240 million companies worldwide, Creditsafe is a leader in international business credit reporting. Collecting data from over 200 sources, Creditsafe gathers information locally from trusted partners, ensuring quality and fresh information. This information is compiled into a report that can be ordered and received instantly online.

Posted by IndustryNet
Precision milling and turning constitute a relatively modest part of the precision machining industry, with just under 2 percent of the total companies in that space dedicated to this craft. Small but mighty, do not be fooled as this sector is still growing rapidly.

Milling and turning providers saw a 1 percent growth in sales since last year, generating nearly $215 million. This is an impressive figure considering that there are only 145 companies in this space.

Suppliers that focus on precision milling and turning contribute to the economy in other ways as well. As of this year, 2,593 jobs could be directly associated with these companies. This population has grown two percent compared with the previous year.

The growth appears to be evenly distributed as five percent of companies reported employment growth compared with three percent that reported a decline. As more evidence of favorable contribution to the economy, domestic distribution has increased by 70 percent compared with the previous year, resulting in only 22 companies that distribute internationally.

Industry distribution

The distribution of milling and turning companies is overwhelmingly concentrated in the Midwest, with 49 percent residing in the center of our nation. The rest of the country is almost equally dispersed, with the South, West and Northeast hosting 17 percent, 16 percent and 18 percent respectively.

These demographics are somewhat different than the overall machining sector, which tends to be more evenly proportioned.
Posted by IndustryNet
Precision machined parts are essential in modern society, but they are useless if they can't stay in proper alignment and orientation. The components that perform this task are referred to as screw machine products, even though they describe more than just screws.

Pins, bolts, shafts and, of course, screws, are all required to keep the machines and products in our lives functional.

Often relatively small in size, the required volume of screw machine parts is extremely high, making these suppliers a surprisingly powerful part of the domestic manufacturing economy.

Regional Contributions

This year has witnessed a 9% increase in total sales for the 744 companies that fall into the screw machine supplier category. Those companies generate over $1.6 billion in revenue, or approximately $2.2 million per company if averaged out.

Distribution is weighted heavily toward the Midwest, with 54% of the industry being based in this geographic region. Many of these companies are taking on new business as overseas production returns to the United States. What follows is a look at the 11 fastest-growing precision screw machine manufacturers in the country.
Posted by IndustryNet
U.S. industrial output increased for a fifth straight month, as manufacturing gains offset losses in mining, according to a new report released this morning by the Federal Reserve.

The Federal Reserve's release on U.S. industrial production and capacity utilization showed industrial output rose 0.1 percent in October, continuing a steady rise in the index since June. Overall, the Fed's index has surged 4% compared to this time last year.

Manufacturing leads nation's industrial output gains

Manufacturing output outpaced overall gains, rising 0.3% in October, while mining output dropped 0.3%. A decline in auto production hampered overall manufacturing gains, according to the report. Manufacturing output, excluding motor vehicle production, edged up a half percent.

Mining output has slipped the past few months after hitting a record high in August, mostly due to oil and gas production, according to the Fed.
Posted by IndustryNet
With Thanksgiving approaching, we should take a few minutes to be thankful for our friends and neighbors who are seeing their businesses flourish. There are several reasons for this resurgence in domestic production, but one of the biggest is the practice of "reshoring."

Here are some companies that not only fully embrace reshoring but happen to make products that are very popular around Thanksgiving.

Posted by IndustryNet
Screw machine products make up a key portion of the precision machining industry. The applications for screw machine products are vast, with these items used in appliances, computers, firefighting equipment, airbags and more.

Depending on the manufacturer, screw machine products can be made from stainless steel, aluminum, steel, plastic or bronze. Take a closer look at the size and distribution of the industry to have a better idea of how it fits into precision machining as a whole.

Posted by IndustryNet
Our world is inseparably dependent upon machines and technology as a part of everyday life. While many may not give it a second thought, everything - from the car they drive to the computers utilized for work to the instruments used by your doctor - requires precision machined components to function.

An individual may rely on thousands of these precision machined parts during the course of their day without even knowing it. Yet, without the specialized manufacturers who produce these high-tolerance parts, much of life as we know it would grind to a halt.

Current Status

Thanks to near universal reliance on technology and recent changes to global trade agreements, precision machined component manufacturers are seeing a resurgence here in the United States. Average sales have increased 14 percent, and nearly 1,000 jobs have been added to the sector since the previous year.

Precision machined component manufacturers have also seen positive economics with 7 percent reporting an increase in employment and 3 percent reporting sales growth. These figures are nearly double the statistics for manufacturing in general.
Posted by IndustryNet
U.S. industrial activity remains in expansion territory. In recent weeks, a flurry of positive news for U.S. manufacturing has emerged, countering the unease cause by the new import tariffs and continuing the positive track the sector has been on for the past several years.

Durable goods orders are trending up; the ISM's New Orders and Production indices are on solid ground; and the nation's industrial sector added 32,000 jobs in September alone.

Encompassing five states and promising more than 1,000 jobs, here are just a few of the major manufacturer announcements for the week.

Posted by IndustryNet
According to new data released by MNI, Connecticut's manufacturing sector added jobs at its fastest rate in decades. MNI, compiler and publisher of the industrial information that powers IndustryNet, reports Connecticut added 3,153 manufacturing jobs, or 1.5% between June 2017 and June 2018. This marks the state's third straight year of gains, and one that far outstripped increases of the past few years.

Connecticut struggled to add manufacturing jobs after the recession as a strong dollar hit its export market; global competition took hold, and high business costs sent some manufacturers to cheaper locations. The state's manufacturing sector all but flatlined, with industrial employment inching down 4% between June 2010 and June 2015.

The gains of the past three years, however, suggest things are looking up for Connecticut manufacturing. In this past year alone, the state added more manufacturing jobs than at any year since MNI began reporting on its manufacturing climate in 2002.
Posted by IndustryNet
Business Credit Reports (BCR) has delivered powerful new innovations that give small businesses the ability to have a sophisticated beginning-to-end business credit system, similar to those utilized by larger companies, with affordable pricing and terms.

These innovative solutions make managing credit at small companies easier and help the company to grow through increased revenue and fewer losses due to payment delinquency.

BCR's recently-announced customizable online credit application and Payment Performance Insights provide the bookends to a business credit management solution that is centered on BCR's line of 20+ proprietary multi-bureau blended business credit reports.

The customizable online credit application, which is available to all BCR customers at no charge, enables small businesses to accurately and reliably capture information from credit applicants. This makes processing credit applications faster and more efficient by eliminating paper shuffling and data entry.
Posted by IndustryNet
A number of new reports out in recent days point to a growing manufacturing sector, though optimism among supply executives has been tempered by a growing unease as tariff deadlines loom.

Last month, the United State Trade Representative announced it was finalizing the rate of tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods, raising duties from 10% to 25%. The tariffs encompass roughly half of all imported products from China and are having a growing impact on domestic supply chains.

The Census Bureau reported a widening trade gap as U.S. manufacturers scramble to procure material ahead of the tariff deadlines, capital expenditures have leveled off after growing steadily for several months.
Posted by IndustryNet
For a second straight month, U.S. manufacturing activity edged back in October after surging to a fourteen-year high in August, according the Institute for Supply Management's latest survey of manufacturing executives.

U.S. manufacturing activity now stands at 57.7%, down 2.1% from September's reading of 59.8% and down 3.6% from August's reading of 61.3%.

Trade uncertainty continues to weigh on U.S. manufacturers, with a number of respondents to the ISM's survey citing "stressed supply chains" and "mounting pressure" surrounding the Section 232 tariffs.

Today's headlines, however, offer a glimmer of hope revealing U.S. trade talks with China may have turned a corner ahead of the 25% tariffs slated to go into effect January 1st.
Posted by IndustryNet
Buffalo Abrasives has introduced their new premium B5532 bond for Saw (File) Gumming, designed to eliminate hardening of the saw teeth with free cutting bond requiring minimal dressing.

With major consolidation of companies in this market Buffalo Abrasives offers an alternative to primarily only off the shelf, one specification fits all options.

In addition to the B5532 Bond, this product is made with premium ceramic grain for faster, longer lasting wheels ranging from 5-14" (metric sizes available), for the timber, woodworking & saw manufacturing industries.
Posted by IndustryNet
Precision machined components and parts are a rapidly growing industry in the United States. In the face of new tariffs on certain raw materials and components, this sector of the manufacturing industry is not slowing down.

In fact, the main industries that rely on precision machined parts are all expected to grow over the next few years. These industries include automotive, aircraft, household appliances, spacecraft, tech hardware, medical devices, munitions, heavy machinery and military equipment.

Future trends

Forecasts are predicting continued growth as tariffs begin to positively influence domestic manufacturing. As large firms return production and assembly to the U.S., the opportunities for precision manufacturing are also slated to increase.

There is currently a shortage of precision machines capable of the kind of work required to assemble complicated products such as commercial aircraft. This demand is predicted to continue for at least several years as production backlogs slowly clear out.
Posted by IndustryNet
New orders for manufactured goods climbed for a third straight month, while U.S. businesses are spending less on capital equipment. The trade gap continues to widen, and manufacturers are looking ahead -- and looking closer to home -- as USTR stops accepting exclusions to tariffs.

Finally, a new survey suggests public support for the recent tariff action is stronger than the headlines would suggest. Here is the week's manufacturing news in brief.

Posted by IndustryNet
BelGAS has introduced its Type P140 pressure regulators for a wide range of gaseous fluids, including air, natural gas, LP, propane, and general-purpose pressure regulation. The P140 offers versatility, accuracy, and a compact design, available with or without internal relief.

BelGAS ramped up production of the P140, with thousands boxed and ready for same-week shipment from its U.S. headquarters. The P140 is designed to be reliable and economical -- a balance that is key for the many markets this device serves. It is an ideal and cost-effective choice for typical residential applications, as well as many light industrial and commercial applications.
Posted by IndustryNet
Electrical discharge machining (EDM) is sometimes known as die sinking, wire erosion, burning, spark eroding, spark machining or wire burning. This process of shaping materials via the use of sparks or electrical discharges is a key part of the precision machining industry due to the precise nature of the components produced. Gain a better understanding of the EDM sector and its place in the overall industry of precision machining.

Positioning EDM in the industry

To better understand what the top EDM companies contribute to the field, you must first have a feel for this sector. There are 137 companies in electrical discharge machinery and machining, accounting for 1,679 jobs.

The average current sales in EDM is $115.40 million. Of those companies, only three are women-owned and three are minority-owned. Nine of the companies import raw materials and 107 have domestic distribution with 127 offering international distribution.

Posted by IndustryNet
Part of the precision machining industry, electrical discharge machining (EDM) is a process that relies on electrical discharges or sparks to remove material from a component, creating the desired shape.

The EDM system creates an electrical spark that produces intense heat and can, therefore, melt nearly anything. EDM involves a great deal of precision to ensure that just the targeted portion of the material is exposed to the heat, without any impact to the surfaces below or next to the given area.

EDM Trends

After researchers developed what would be the foundation of modern EDM during the 1940s, this process remained relatively uncommon for a long time. Today, however, it has become one of the most popular machining processes.

Some figures indicate that in 1960, EDM accounted for about 0.5% of the machine tool market and by 1998, this figure was 6%. As you explore the following more recent figures regarding sales, jobs and more, it becomes clear that EDM continues to grow.

Posted by IndustryNet
Loram Maintenance of Way hosted special guest, U.S. Representative Tom Emmer (R-MN-6) for a facility tour and town hall session on Tuesday, October 16.

Emmer resides in Delano, MN which is a short distance from the campus of Loram's manufacturing facility and warehouse in Medina, MN. Emmer received Loram employees in the manufacturing shop bay where they exchanged conversation on the growing need for skilled laborers.

He spoke about middle-skill occupations that require early development in programs such as apprenticeships and on-the-job training, but do not necessarily require a four-year college degree.

Emmer also addressed the question of trade issues with Canada and Mexico and remains positive that the new North American agreement with Mexico and Canada is the right move.

Founded in 1954, Loram Maintenance of Way started out as a small operation consisting of two simple machines, and a handful of employees.

Posted by IndustryNet
With the acceleration of the U.S. economy and the implementation of new tariffs, domestic demand for the products produced by precision machining, and the tools to fabricate them, is on the rise.

The new duties affect a wide range of components including parts for aircraft gas turbines, engine parts, machining centers for working metal, lathes and waterjet cutting machinery. The increased expense of importing machined items is promoting both the growth of existing U.S. precision machining shops and the startup of new ones.

IndustryNet has compiled data on the 7,638 companies in the U.S. precision machining industry. The sectors included are:
Posted by IndustryNet
According to new data released by MNI, manufacturing job growth in the Maryland/DC region intensified up over the past year, led by strong growth in the state's medical instruments and food processing sectors.

According to MNI, compiler and publisher of the industrial information that powers IndustryNet, Maryland/DC added 1,112 manufacturing jobs in the past year. This is the most jobs the state has added in a given year in the post-recession era and four time the number of jobs the region gained over the 2016-2017 survey period.

So what is driving the region's manufacturing momentum?

This article will take a look at some of the major developments that have occurred in the region since the recession, including new company announcements. We'll examine the region's outlook in light of new federal and state policies and explore IndustryNet's extensive regional and historical data for the state.
Posted by IndustryNet
In celebration of Manufacturing Day 2018, Wall Colmonoy Aerobraze OKC will open its doors on Friday, October 12, 2018 to students from local Career Techs and high schools as part of an effort to inspire the next generation of opportunities that a career in manufacturing can provide.

Planned activities at Aerobraze OKC include tours of the facility, equipment and product manufacturing demonstrations of machining, welding, brazing and fabrication. The day will also include a hands-on activity intended to showcase Aerobraze's expertise in sheet metal fabrication.

Blueprints and work instructions will be provided for the students to assemble an item made from cut, bent, milled, and drilled sheet metal fabricated parts. Each student will leave with a gift bag that contains an F-15 fighter jet made from metal pieces cut by water jet and slip fitted together. WCC Aerobraze OKC developed and manufactures heat exchangers for the U.S. Air Force's F-15 fighter jets.

Posted by IndustryNet
While historically companies have used imported aluminum to improve their bottom lines, with the implementation of tariffs on both the raw metal and fabricated products, manufacturers are exploring other strategies. Some, such as Coca-Cola and Genuine Parts, are expecting to pass their cost increases onto consumers. Others, like Illinois Tool Works, are pursuing local sourcing.

The advantages of domestic suppliers

With shorter distances involved when using domestic suppliers, the resultant costs of logistical problems regarding weather conditions and geopolitical obstacles can be reduced or eliminated. Transportation expenditures also are lower and fewer warehousing facilities may be required.

Buying domestically can also result in increased goodwill from consumers. Many customers prefer locally produced goods. They consider buying them as promoting both local wealth and jobs.

Posted by IndustryNet
The products of aluminum rolling and drawing companies play an essential part in the everyday life of most Americans. Rail cars, aircraft and packaging materials all employ rolled aluminum products. Almost 50 percent of aluminum alloys become feedstocks for aluminum rolling. Manufacturers of beverage cans use two million tons of this metal per year. The use of rolled aluminum is also expected to expand in the automotive industry. It is also used to make components for climate control systems.

IndustryNet has compiled statistics on the nation's aluminum rolling and drawing companies, representing growth in employment of 0.36 percent. Average sales for this industry sector are $6.77 billion. The majority of aluminum rolling and drawing plants are located in the Midwest and the South, as are many of the top companies profiled below.
Posted by IndustryNet
This October, over 3,000 events celebrating Manufacturing Day will salute a vital engine of our economy. Since 2012, companies, communities and organizations have joined in the effort to educate the public on the contribution of the manufacturing industry to the quality of life across the country and around the world.

Here are some of the events that open the door to the manufacturing universe:

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