Manufacturing technology orders for August 2016 were up 15.9 percent compared to August 2015 and up 34.4 percent compared to July, according to the latest U.S. Manufacturing Technology Orders report from AMT - The Association for Manufacturing Technology.
"This was the first time since March 2015 that we saw growth in all six regions that we track for this report," said AMT President Douglas K. Woods. "Much of the growth came from smaller contract machining shops, a sign of greater activity and capacity constraints in larger industries. Automotive and aerospace also made gains after some faltering. These are possible indicators that our market has hit its bottom and is signaling a comeback, albeit slowly."
Industry forecasts still indicate that orders for capital manufacturing equipment will finish the year below the levels for the previous year, with a full-fledged market comeback not expected until the second half of 2017. Business spending has remained weak amid the continued constraints of a weak energy sector and strong dollar, augmented by a climate of uncertainty around the presidential elections.
August 2016 manufacturing technology orders were valued at $336.58 million, compared to $250.40 million in July and $290.29 million in August 2015. Year-to-date orders for 2016 stand at $2,431.93 million, a 12.8 percent decline compared to the same point in 2015. USMTO data is a reliable leading economic indicator as manufacturing companies invest in capital metalworking equipment to increase capacity and improve productivity.