The U.S. manufacturing sector in December 2016

The U.S. manufacturing sector in December 2016

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in December, and the overall economy grew for the 91st consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®.

The report was issued today by Bradley J. Holcomb, CPSM, CPSD, chair of the Institute for Supply Management® (ISM®) Manufacturing Business Survey Committee. “The December PMI® registered 54.7%, an increase of 1.5 percentage points from the November reading of 53.2 %. The New Orders Index registered 60.2 %, an increase of 7.2 percentage points from the November reading of 53 %. The Production Index registered 60.3 %, 4.3 percentage points higher than the November reading of 56 %. The Employment Index registered 53.1 %, an increase of 0.8 percentage point from the November reading of 52.3 %. Inventories of raw materials registered 47 %, a decrease of 2 percentage points from the November reading of 49 %. The Prices Index registered 65.5 % in December, an increase of 11 percentage points from the November reading of 54.5 %, indicating higher raw materials prices for the 10th consecutive month. The PMI®, New Orders, Production and Employment Indexes all registered new highs for the year 2016, and the forward-looking comments from the panel are largely positive.”

Manufacturing

Of the 18 manufacturing industries, 11 are reporting growth in December in the following order: Petroleum & Coal Products; Primary Metals; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Paper Products; Machinery; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Computer & Electronic Products; Fabricated Metal Products; and Chemical Products. The six industries reporting contraction in December — listed in order — are: Plastics & Rubber Products; Furniture & Related Products; Printing & Related Support Activities; Textile Mills; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; and Transportation Equipment.

What respondents are stating 

•             “Ramping up for year-end by reducing inventory.” (Chemical Products)

•             “Very strong month in terms of booking and billing which will contribute to a good overall year revenue-wise.” (Computer & Electronic Products)

•             “Our business remains strong and we are seeing continued growth.” (Plastics & Rubber Products)

•             “We have been fairly steady the last few months and it appears business is strong into the 1st quarter of next year.” (Primary Metals)

•             “Moving into [a] more inflationary environment, with lots of pressure to increase prices on a number of fronts.” (Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products)

•             “Business continues to be brisk with an uptick of RFQs. Customers are earmarking funds for capital equipment upgrades.” (Machinery)

•             “Hiring still tight on available local labour. Business, by segments, still uneven. Some consumer markets very (seasonally) strong, but industrial markets lagging.” (Transportation Equipment)

•             “Business conditions are good, demand is growing.” (Miscellaneous Manufacturing)

•             “Continued strong demand for product and strong forecast for next year.” (Nonmetallic Mineral Products)

•             “December 2016 is way ahead of December 2015.” (Fabricated Metal Products)

Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business® data is seasonally adjusted for the New Orders, Production, Employment and Supplier Deliveries Indexes.  

DECEMBER 2016 MANUFACTURING INDEX SUMMARIES

PMI®
Manufacturing expanded in December as the PMI® registered 54.7 %, an increase of 1.5 percentage points from the November reading of 53.2 %, indicating growth in manufacturing for the fourth consecutive month and a new high reading for the year. A reading above 50 % indicates that the manufacturing economy is generally expanding; below 50 % indicates that it is generally contracting.

A PMI® above 43.2 %, over a period of time, generally indicates an expansion of the overall economy. Therefore, the December PMI® indicates growth for the 91st consecutive month in the overall economy, and indicates growth in the manufacturing sector for the fourth consecutive month. Holcomb stated, “The past relationship between the PMI® and the overall economy indicates that the average PMI® for January through December (51.5 percent) corresponds to a 2.6 % increase in real gross domestic product (GDP) on an annualized basis. In addition, if the PMI® for December (54.7 %) is annualized, it corresponds to a 3.6 % increase in real GDP annually.”

Mfr. Table 2

New Orders

ISM®’s New Orders Index registered 60.2 % in December, which is an increase of 7.2 percentage points when compared to the 53 % reported for November, indicating growth in new orders for the fourth consecutive month and a new high reading for the year. A New Orders Index above 52.2  %, over time, is generally consistent with an increase in the Census Bureau’s series on manufacturing orders (in constant 2000 dollars).

The 12 industries reporting growth in new orders in December — listed in order — are: Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Petroleum & Coal Products; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Primary Metals; Paper Products; Computer & Electronic Products; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Machinery; Chemical Products; Fabricated Metal Products; and Transportation Equipment. The four industries reporting a decrease in new orders during December are: Furniture & Related Products; Printing & Related Support Activities; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; and Plastics & Rubber Products.

Mfr. Table 3

Production

ISM®’s Production Index registered 60.3 % in December, which is an increase of 4.3 percentage points when compared to the 56 % reported for November, indicating growth in production for the fourth consecutive month and a new high reading for the year. An index above 51.3 %, over time, is generally consistent with an increase in the Federal Reserve Board’s Industrial Production figures.

The 10 industries reporting growth in production during the month of December — listed in order — are: Petroleum & Coal Products; Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Machinery; Paper Products; Chemical Products; Computer & Electronic Products; Fabricated Metal Products; and Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components. The two industries reporting a decrease in production during December are: Nonmetallic Mineral Products; and Transportation Equipment. Six industries reported no change in production in December compared to November.

Mfr. Table 4

Employment

ISM®’s Employment Index registered 53.1 % in December, an increase of 0.8 percentage point when compared to the November reading of 52.3 %, indicating growth in employment in December for the third consecutive month and a new high reading for the year. An Employment Index above 50.6 percent, over time, is generally consistent with an increase in the Bureau of Labour Statistics (BLS) data on manufacturing employment.

Of the 18 manufacturing industries, the nine industries reporting employment growth in December — listed in order — are: Textile Mills; Printing & Related Support Activities; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Primary Metals; Paper Products; Machinery; Computer & Electronic Products; and Chemical Products. The six industries reporting a decrease in employment in December — listed in order — are: Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Fabricated Metal Products; Plastics & Rubber Products; Transportation Equipment; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; and Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components.

Mfr. Table 5

Supplier Deliveries

The delivery performance of suppliers to manufacturing organizations was slower in December as the Supplier Deliveries Index registered 52.9 percent, which is 2.8 percentage points lower than the 55.7 percent reported for November. A reading below 50 percent indicates faster deliveries, while a reading above 50 percent indicates slower deliveries.

The six industries reporting slower supplier deliveries in December — listed in order — are: Fabricated Metal Products; Transportation Equipment; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Computer & Electronic Products; and Machinery. The four industries reporting faster supplier deliveries in December are: Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Petroleum & Coal Products; Plastics & Rubber Products; and Chemical Products. Eight industries reported no change in supplier deliveries in December compared to November.

Mfr. Table 6

Inventories*

The Inventories Index registered 47 percent in December, which is a decrease of 2 percentage points when compared to the 49 percent reported for November, indicating raw materials inventories are contracting in December for the 18th consecutive month. An Inventories Index greater than 42.8 percent, over time, is generally consistent with expansion in the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) figures on overall manufacturing inventories (in chained 2000 dollars).

The five industries reporting higher inventories in December are: Primary Metals; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Petroleum & Coal Products; Fabricated Metal Products; and Machinery. The 11 industries reporting lower inventories in December — listed in order — are: Textile Mills; Printing & Related Support Activities; Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Computer & Electronic Products; Plastics & Rubber Products; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Transportation Equipment; Paper Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; and Chemical Products

Mfr. Table 7

Customers’ Inventories*

ISM®’s Customers’ Inventories Index registered 49 percent in December, which is the same reading as reported for November, indicating that customers’ inventory levels are considered too low in December for the third consecutive month.

The five manufacturing industries reporting customers’ inventories as being too high during the month of December are: Paper Products; Furniture & Related Products; Transportation Equipment; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; and Fabricated Metal Products. The six industries reporting customers’ inventories as too low during December — listed in order — are: Textile Mills; Plastics & Rubber Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Machinery; Chemical Products; and Computer & Electronic Products.

Mfr. Table 8

Prices*

The ISM® Prices Index registered 65.5 percent in December, an increase of 11 percentage points when compared to the November reading of 54.5 percent, indicating an increase in raw materials prices for the 10th consecutive month. In December, 38 percent of respondents reported paying higher prices, 7 percent reported paying lower prices, and 55 percent of supply executives reported paying the same prices as in November. A Prices Index above 52.4 percent, over time, is generally consistent with an increase in the Bureau of Labour Statistics (BLS) Producer Price Index for Intermediate Materials.

Of the 18 manufacturing industries, the 14 industries that reported paying increased prices for its raw materials in December — listed in order — are: Fabricated Metal Products; Primary Metals; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Furniture & Related Products; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Paper Products; Petroleum & Coal Products; Plastics & Rubber Products; Machinery; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Chemical Products; Transportation Equipment; Computer & Electronic Products; and Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products. The only industry reporting paying lower prices during the month of December is Apparel, Leather & Allied Products.

Mfr. Table 9

Backlog of Orders*

ISM®’s Backlog of Orders Index registered 49 percent in December, the same reading as reported for November, indicating contraction in order backlogs for the sixth consecutive month. Of the 88 percent of respondents who reported their backlog of orders, 21 percent reported greater backlogs, 23 percent reported smaller backlogs, and 56 percent reported no change from November.

The six industries reporting growth in order backlogs in December — listed in order — are: Fabricated Metal Products; Primary Metals; Paper Products; Machinery; Computer & Electronic Products; and Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components. The six industries reporting a decrease in order backlogs during December — listed in order — are: Furniture & Related Products; Chemical Products; Transportation Equipment; Plastics & Rubber Products; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; and Miscellaneous Manufacturing. Six industries reported no change in order backlogs in December compared to November.

Mfr. Table 10

New Export Orders*

ISM®’s New Export Orders Index registered 56 percent in December, an increase of 4 percentage points when compared to the 52 percent reported for November, indicating growth in new export orders for the 10th consecutive month.

The 11 industries reporting growth in new export orders in December — listed in order — are: Petroleum & Coal Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Paper Products; Chemical Products; Computer & Electronic Products; Fabricated Metal Products; Machinery; and Transportation Equipment. None of the 18 industries reported a decrease in new export orders during December. Six industries reported no change in new export orders in December compared to November.

Mfr. Table 11

Imports*

ISM®’s Imports Index registered 50.5 percent in December, the same reading as reported for November. This month’s reading indicates growth in imports for the third consecutive month.

The five industries reporting growth in imports during the month of December are: Plastics & Rubber Products; Primary Metals; Furniture & Related Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; and Machinery. The five industries reporting a decrease in imports during December are: Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Fabricated Metal Products; Chemical Products; Transportation Equipment; and Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products. Seven industries reported no change in imports in December compared to November.

Mfr. Table 12

* The Inventories, Customers’ Inventories, Prices, Backlog of Orders, New Export Orders and Imports Indexes do not meet the accepted criteria for seasonal adjustments.

Buying Policy

Average commitment lead time for Capital Expenditures increased in December by 5 days to 138 days. Average lead time for Production Materials increased by 6 days to 65 days. Average lead time for Maintenance, Repair and Operating (MRO) Supplies increased by 2 days to 33 days.

Mfr. Table 13

Note: DO NOT CONFUSE THIS NATIONAL REPORT with the various regional purchasing reports released across the country. The national report’s information reflects the entire United States, while the regional reports contain primarily regional data from their local vicinities. Also, the information in the regional reports is not used in calculating the results of the national report. The information compiled in this report is for the month of December 2016.

The data presented herein is obtained from a survey of manufacturing supply executives based on information they have collected within their respective organizations. ISM® makes no representation, other than that stated within this release, regarding the individual company data collection procedures. The data should be compared to all other economic data sources when used in decision-making.

Institute for Supply Management® (ISM®) serves supply management professionals in more than 90 countries. Its 48000 members around the world manage about USD 1 trillion in corporate and government supply chain procurement annually. Founded in 1915 as the first supply management institute in the world, ISM is committed to advancing the practice of supply management to drive value and competitive advantage for its members, contributing to a prosperous and sustainable world. ISM leads the profession through the ISM Report On Business®, its highly regarded certification programs and the newly launched ISM Mastery Model™. This report has been issued by the association since 1931, except for a four-year interruption during World War II.

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