Material handling orders grow, continues to accelerate, report finds

MHI forecast projects double-digit growth by 2014


Material handling equipment new orders grew 7.2% in 2012 and are expected to grow between 5.0% to 6.0% in 2013 and 10.0% or more in 2014, according to the latest Material Handling Equipment Manufacturing Forecast (MHEM) released by MHI.

“As the current US economic expansion shifts from capital expenditure driven to consumer-led, we anticipate modest, positive MHEM growth for 2013. Housing, automotive rebounds and expansion in industrial, warehouse and commercial buildings (over 69% from 2014 to 2018) will contribute substantially to improved MHEM growth for 2014 and beyond," said Hal Vandiver, MHI executive consultant.

In addition, material handling equipment shipments grew 9.8% in 2012 and are projected to grow 3.5% in 2013 and 9.1% in 2014. Domestic demand (shipments plus imports less exports) grew 10.9% in 2012 and is estimated to grow 3.4% in 2013 and just over 9.5% in 2014.

MHEM trade growth slowed by more than 50.0% in 2012 reflecting reduced U.S. demand and serious problems in foreign markets. Import growth in 2012 was 17.9%, down from 37.7% in 2011. Export growth was 11.2% in 2012, down from 26.2% in 2011. MHEM imports and exports are expected to slow dramatically in 2013 and rebound modestly beginning mid-2014.

The MHEM forecast of material handling equipment manufacturing is released each quarter by MHI and looks 12 to 18 months forward to anticipate changes in the material handling and logistics marketplace.

Download the complete forecast.

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