Last updateTue, 22 Jan 2019 8pm


Industrial Production Rose in October

Industrial production edged up 0.1% in October, as a gain for manufacturing outweighed decreases elsewhere. As a result of upward revisions primarily in mining, the overall index is now reported to have advanced at an annual rate of 4.7% in the third quarter, appreciably above the gain of 3.3% reported.

Manufacturing output moved up 0.3% in October despite a sizable drop in motor vehicle assemblies; manufacturing production excluding motor vehicles and parts increased 0.5%. The output of durables advanced 0.5%, as the indexes for most of its component industries other than motor vehicles strengthened. Nondurables posted a gain of 0.2%, with mixed results among its industries. The output of other manufacturing (publishing and logging) fell 1.5%. 

Manufacturers Face Unprecedented Employment Shortfall

As growth in the U.S. economy continues and manufacturers create more and more jobs in a thriving sector, the industry's pre-existing workforce crisis could get even worse, according to a new 2018 skills gap study released by Deloitte and The Manufacturing Institute—the social impact arm of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). The widening manufacturing skills gap is expected to grow from about 488,000 jobs left open today to as many as 2.4 million manufacturing jobs going unfilled between this year and 2028 (compared with 2 million jobs between 2015 and 2025 per an earlier study). In turn, $454 billion in manufacturing GDP could be at risk in 2028, or more than $2.5 trillion over the next decade. 

NAM: Manufacturing Day 2018 Considered a Success

According to the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), Manufacturing Day 2018 “generated a tremendous amount of media coverage, which is critical in our efforts to educate the public,” Erin Streeter wrote on the Shopfloor blog. “All told, Manufacturing Day generated more than $2.2 million worth of free print and television coverage that reached nearly 13 million people. And on social media, manufacturers reached more than 51 million people! Manufacturing Day trended nationally on Twitter, where it was mentioned more than 20,000 times.” 

Houston Area Manufacturing Activity Expanding

The Institute for Supply Management reports that manufacturing activity in the Houston region expanded in October for the 13th consecutive month, according to The Houston Chronicle.

“Health care, manufacturing, midstream oil and gas operations, and engineering and construction companies continue to report expansion, the report said. All other sectors were near neutral.”  

Manufacturing PMI Reaches Five-Month High

The seasonally adjusted IHS Markit final U.S. Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) posted 55.7 in October, broadly in line with September's reading of 55.6. The latest figure signaled a further pick-up in growth momentum and a strong improvement in the health of the manufacturing sector. Moreover, October's reading reached a five-month high.

Greater production requirements and efforts to clear backlogs meanwhile led to a quicker monthly rise in hiring, the fastest for ten months. Price pressures remained intense, however, with rates of input price and output charge inflation accelerating. At the same time, business confidence picked up from September's 12-month low. 

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