The Association for Manufacturing Technology (AMT) reported that August U.S. manufacturing technology for machine tool orders totaled $285.92 million, a drop of 10.2% from July’s $318.48 million and down 21.2% when compared with the total of $362.65 million reported for August 2014. With a year-to-date total of $2.771.2 billion, 2015 was down 10% when compared with the same period in 2014.
“While there is a sense of unease in manufacturing now as indicated by this reduction in orders combined with drops in the PMI and industrial production, some leveling after a period of strong growth is expected and helps build stable longer term growth,” said AMT President Douglas K. Woods. “We are a diversified industry, and pockets of manufacturing continue to show resilience, such as automotive stamping and medical devices. While there is some cause for caution, we do not anticipate more than market flatness into the early part of 2016.”
The Southeast Region showed the strongest numbers, with metal cutting machine tool orders up 26.1% in August from July, with a total of $273.5 million, but down 2.2% YTD over the same period in 2014. Given that the Southeast has become extremely strong in manufacturing, particularly among automotive OEMs and their Tier 1 and 2 suppliers, that’s not surprising.
The South Central region saw the biggest drop, with metal cutting machine tool orders down 42.9% in August to $216.76 million and orders YTD 2015 down 54.7% over the same period in 2014. The Northeast region saw August orders drop 24.5% to $534.5 million, from July’s orders. However the Northeast region’s YTD orders for 2015 was up 11.5% over the same period in 2014.
The North Central East region saw manufacturing technology for metal cutting drop 11.2% in August from July to $737.1 million, with YTD 2015 dropping 8.4% over the same period in 2014. The North West dropped 12.3% to $512.9 million in August from July, with a YTD that was up 3.1% over the same period in 2014.
The West region saw the smallest drop in metal cutting manufacturing technology orders, down 1.2% to $416.4 million, and down 7.8% YTD over the same period in 2014.
The United States Manufacturing Technology Orders report, compiled by the trade association 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, stated the AMT.