Economic slowdown hits tools

The economic slowdown has struck manufacturers of factory equipment and tools, but the hit hasn't been too severe. All 19 industries classified here as tools manufacturers saw their U.S. end markets slow in the 12-mo ending March 2001, but in most cases, the deceleration was miniscule. For example, the industry that makes instruments to measure electricity (SIC 3825) saw end-market growth sl...
By Staff June 1, 2001

The economic slowdown has struck manufacturers of factory equipment and tools, but the hit hasn’t been too severe. All 19 industries classified here as tools manufacturers saw their U.S. end markets slow in the 12-mo ending March 2001, but in most cases, the deceleration was miniscule.

For example, the industry that makes instruments to measure electricity (SIC 3825) saw end-market growth slow to “only” 48.62%, down from 53.87% in the 12-mo ending December 2000. That change is a 5.3% slowdown, but it’s from such a high level that the change hardly registers.

More noticeable is the negative growth seen in the fluid meters (SIC 3824) and process controls instruments (SIC 3823) industries. Here, end-markets fell 3.38% in the 12-mo ending March 2001.

The demand slowdown should brighten prospects for plant engineers who are buying new equipment and tools. Tools producers may be more willing to cut prices in order to maintain market share. We also see improvements in the margin conditions for 11 industries in the tools and equipment arena.

Price/cost/demand roundup

Industry SIC Average Product Prices Average Product Prices Direct Mfg. Costs Direct Mfg. Costs Growth in U.S. End Markets Growth in U.S. End Markets
the average producer in an industry. Grades of A to A+ mean plant engineers may be able to strike a better bargain with suppliers and better control plant costs.

All data prepared and presented by Thinking Cap Solutions, Inc., Port Angeles, WA (telephone: 360-452-6159; e-mail: ebaatz@ice-alert.com).

Other hand and edge tools 3423 1.03 0.99 Stable B 6.23 5.31
Hand saws and saw blades 3425 0.42 0.29 Stable C 4.26 2.69
Other hardware 3429 1.91 1.61 Stable A 3.61 1.61
Other power transmission equipment 3568 1.09 1.04 Stable A+ 6.15 3.62
Conveyors and conveying equipment 3535 1.13 1.46 Stable A+ 7.23 5.86
Hoists, cranes, and monorails 3536 1.76 1.94 Stable A+ 6.35 4.36
Industrial trucks and tractors 3537 1.23 1.54 Stable A 8.73 6.48
Metal-cutting machine tools 3541 0.78 0.74 Stable C 17.29 15.47
Machine tool accessories 3545 0.98 1.30 Stable F 11.19 8.31
Power driven hand tools 3546 0.21 0.65 Stable F 3.65 2.36
Welding apparatus 3548 2.12 2.04 Stable B 2.49 -0.30
Pumps and pumping equipment 3561 1.66 1.86 Stable A 4.00 2.47
Air and gas compressors 3563 1.21 1.17 Stable B 4.00 2.47
Speed changers, drives, and gears 3566 2.13 2.22 Stable A 6.15 3.62
Transformers 3612 2.40 1.56 Stable C 33.00 30.68
Motors and generators 3621 0.23 0.32 Stable F 22.98 20.39
Process control instruments 3823 1.10 1.16 Stable C -0.54 -3.38
Fluid meters and counting devices 3824 2.66 2.74 Stable D -0.54 -3.38
Instruments to measure electricity 3825 1.34 1.35 Stable F- 3.87 48.62

Want this article on your website? Click here to sign up for a free account in ContentStream® and make that happen.