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Michael Guckes

Michael has nearly 20 years of experience in forecasting and modeling using advanced statistical techniques. He has successfully applied his expertise at multi-billion dollar companies in the construction, banking and insurance fields. Michael received his BA in Economics and Political Science from Kenyon College and his MBA from The Ohio State University.

Posted by: Michael Guckes 10. July 2019

Production Expands the June 2019 Metalworking Index

The Gardner Business Index (GBI): Metalworking registered 51.8 in June, signaling marginally greater business activity compared to the prior month.

Index readings above 50 indicate expanding activity while values below 50 indicate contracting activity. The Index is calculated as an average of its components.

Gardner Intelligence’s review of these underlying components observed that the Index was supported by expanding activity in production, supplier deliveries and employment. The reading for new orders registered slightly below the average of the components. The Index was pulled down by the ongoing contraction in exports and backlogs.

Metalworking Business Index: The Metalworking Index was supported by production, supplier deliveries and employment. New orders activity fell slightly below the average reading of the six components which constitute the total index.

Data collected in June extended many of the trends observed in the data over the last six to 12 months. Supplier deliveries in 2019 have continued to closely track with production activity readings. This comes after supplier deliveries expanded far faster than any other component during the second half of 2018, as manufacturers rushed to fill new orders. Similar readings for both the supplier deliveries and production components in 2019 suggest that manufacturers have astutely moderated their inventory levels, thereby preventing a glut of inventory.

The gap between production and new orders activity has widened since the beginning of 2019. This gap has been made possible as shops have drawn down their inventory of backlog orders.

Exports registered their fastest rate of contraction since August 2016. A June increase in production activity coupled with a simultaneous slowdown in new orders growth contributed to another month of contracting backlogs.

Posted by: Michael Guckes 12. April 2019

Gardner Business Index: Metalworking Extends Its Consistent Growth Pattern

GBI Metalworking

March’s data extended the trends witnessed in prior months. Supplier deliveries, production, new orders and employment continue to expand at slowing rates while backlogs and exports contract.

 

The Gardner Business Index (GBI): Metalworking was unchanged from the prior month, sustaining a reading of 53.6 in March. The latest data extend the recent trend of slower growth readings first experienced in November. Readings above 50 indicate business activity expansion while readings below 50 indicate business activity contraction. The latest reading is 10.4 percent lower than it was in March 2018, when the Index was near its all-time high.

Gardner Intelligence’s review of the underlying data for the month observed that the Index, which is calculated as an average of its components, was supported by supplier deliveries, new orders, production and employment. Export and backlogs lowered the Index for the second consecutive month, with backlogs contracting faster than exports.

New orders rebounded from February, when the component registered its lowest reading since late 2016. This coupled with a fourth consecutive month of contracting exports resulted in a significant draw down in backlogs. For the month, the backlog component further contracted to its lowest reading in more than two years.

GBI Metalworking details

Exports have contracted in six of the last seven months, however, new orders readings (which represent total metalworking manufacturing orders activity) have expanded every month since October of 2016. This indicates that domestic orders through March have more than offset weak foreign orders.

 

Moving counter to the weakness in exports and backlogs, supplier deliveries and production continued to register business activity at levels reminiscent of those experienced earlier in the business cycle. Employment activity also expanded at levels consistent with those reported earlier in the current cycle. Strong employment readings often indicate a positive mid- to long-range outlook for the industry due to the time and resources required to find and train talent.

Posted by: Michael Guckes 11. January 2019

According to the Gardner Business Index, Metalworking Set a Two-Year Expansion Record

The Gardner Business Index (GBI): Metalworking registered 53.4 for December. Although December’s above-50 reading was slightly lower than the prior month, it was still a milestone for the Metalworking Index: It marked the first time in recorded history that the index has recorded two years of consecutive expansion. Furthermore, it established 2018 as the fastest expanding calendar year since 2012, with an average monthly reading of 57.7. (The prior record was set in 2017 with a reading of 55.8.) The index was supported by supplier deliveries, production, new orders and employment. Backlogs and exports contracted during the month, pulling the average-based index reading lower.

Among all components, supplier deliveries registered the fastest rate of expansion since April, suggesting that manufacturing supply chains were still reacting to the unprecedented expansion of new orders initiated during the first quarter of 2017. As recently as October, new orders readings registered above 60; however, most components in recent months signaled slowing growth.

Should the first quarter or first half of 2019 experience additional periods of slower growth in new orders and production, manufacturers will have to carefully monitor and adjust their input supply flows.

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