Positive signs for manufacturing continue
Numbers from NEMA, along with hopeful signs from Rockwell Automation and valve manufacturers, are among recent positive economic signs for manufacturers.
The NEMA Electroindustry Business Confidence Index (EBCI) for current North American conditions increased for a third straight month and topped the 50-point threshold, indicative of expansion for a second straight month. The index rose 5.3 points to 58.6 in September, its highest reading since April 2006 and more than 50 points above its cyclical low of 8 in December 2008.
The Valve Manufacturers Association said on Sept. 15 that speakers at its annual VMA Market Outlook Workshop had many positive views. Recovery is underway, VMA said, after it heard from 13 economic and industry experts about the near- and long-term futures of various industries served by valve and actuator manufacturers.
In a Sept. 12 New York Times article, “In Wisconsin, Hopeful Signs for Factories,” Rockwell Automation says it hired a dozen workers and resumed third-shift operations at its Mequon, WI, plant. That’s a small part of the earlier 3% layoff of Rockwell Automation’s workforce of more than 20,000, the article noted, but it is a step in the right direction.