Manufacturing Update February 2016

February 24, 2016

The Federal Reserve’s survey results continue to suggest some sluggishness in the regional manufacturing economy, perhaps a reflection of the national economic malaise.  Still, manufacturers nationally added some 29,000 jobs in January and on-line job postings in our own region suggest strong labor market demand.  The “Manufacturing Trends to Watch” item is worth clicking through.  It’s a quick read, written by Dave Brousell, GM and Editorial Manager of the Manufacturing Leadership Council, and will give you a sense of what manufacturers might be thinking about this year…and what they might invest in!

Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia Business Outlook Survey

Firms report “continued weakness in business conditions” in February

  • Indicator for general activity remained slightly negative, edging up marginally from the January reading
  • Shipments remained positive but new orders and employment declined modestly
  • Most firms (76%) reported no change in the prices for their own products
  • Firms reported that both input prices and selling prices fell this month
  • The survey’s future indicators remained positive but showed continued weakening

Click Here for the Complete Survey

National Jobs Numbers

  • Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 151,000 in January
  • Manufacturing added 29,000 jobs in January
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics. Click here for report

Statewide Jobs Numbers

  • NOTE: Current Employment Statistics (CES) data is benchmarked every January so January’s data on statewide manufacturing will not be available until March 9th. You can click on the link below for more information.
Source: PA Department of Labor & Industry—PA Monthly Workstats. Click here: Current Employment Statistics.

January On-Line Job Postings in Manufacturing Firms—Southeastern PA

Occupation Area No. Postings
Management 589
Business & Financial 272
Engineering & Scientific 469
Marketing, Sales, Admin 421
Technical & Production 807
Other 147
Total 2,705


County No. Postings
Bucks 247
Chester 531
Delaware 143
Montgomery 1,289
Philadelphia 495
Total 2,705
Source: From The Conference Board Help Wanted OnLine™ data set January 2015.

 Manufacturing Trends to Watch in 2016

The editorial team at the Manufacturing Leadership Council offers 12 business and technology predictions for the year ahead. Included are predictions about global manufacturing growth, the adoption of Manufacturing 4.0 concepts and technologies, manufacturing skills sets, cybersecurity, smart products, and how the subject of manufacturing might fare in the U.S. presidential election campaign. Of interest to our clients:

“Small Manufacturers to Fight the ‘Digital Divide’: Concerned that they could fall rapidly behind global competitors with greater financial and other resources, small- and medium-size manufacturing companies will move more aggressively to develop strategies to embrace Manufacturing 4.0 concepts and technologies. For many, this will include modernizing plant floor equipment and moving to state-of-the-art operational systems, including cloud-based ERP systems, to better manage information.”

Complete article at this link.



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