Machine tool accessories prices rising

Of the 19 industries tracked here as manufacturers of equipment and tools used in factories, average prices went up in 11 industries, fell in 4, and were flat in 4 others.
By Staff March 1, 2001

Of the 19 industries tracked here as manufacturers of equipment and tools used in factories, average prices went up in 11 industries, fell in 4, and were flat in 4 others. Despite the fact that most manufacturers (17 of 19) are enjoying stability in their direct manufacturing costs, producers of tools and equipment remain under pressure to hike prices.

Trying to figure out exactly which tools or equipment may cause plant engineers the biggest pricing headaches means we must delve down into an analysis of the products that each industry makes. Let’s look at the machine tool accessories (SIC 3545) industry. Here, average industry prices rose 0.98% in the 12-mo period ending December 2000. When we look at the prices paid for the average machine tool accessory in December 2000 compared to December 1999, average industry prices actually rose 1.3%.

The problem in the machine tool accessories industry, as with many others, is that materials costs have taken a big turn upward. Consider this: in 2000, imported materials costs jumped 6.5% while domestic materials costs also rose 1.4%.

Price/cost/demand roundup

IndustrySICAverage Product Prices 1 Change, % During 12-Mo Ending…Sep 00Average Product Prices 1 Change, % During 12-Mo Ending…Dec 00Direct Mfg. Costs 2 and Margins Grade Costs are…GradeGrowth in U.S. End Markets 3 Change, % During 12-Mo Ending…Sep 00Growth in U.S. End Markets 3 Change, % During 12-Mo Ending… Dec 00
Other hand and edge tools 3423 1.05 1.04 Stable C 6.70 6.11
Hand saws and saw blades 3425 0.24 0.41 Rising C 4.97 4.15
Other hardware 3429 2.18 1.96 Stable B 5.02 3.62
Other power transmission equipment 3568 1.23 1.07 Stable A 6.41 5.73
Conveyors and conveying equipment 3535 1.16 1.13 Stable A 5.64 7.39
Hoists, cranes, and monorails 3536 1.59 1.75 Stable A 6.13 6.42
Industrial trucks and tractors 3537 0.76 1.20 Stable C 7.27 8.90
Metal-cutting machine tools 3541 0.70 0.78 Stable D 15.29 16.94
Machine tool accessories 3545 0.74 0.98 Stable F 10.74 10.89
Power-driven hand tools 3546 0.20 0.22 Stable D 4.30 3.62
Welding apparatus 3548 1.74 1.96 Rising C 3.58 2.33
Pumps and pumping equipment 3561 1.63 1.63 Stable A 4.49 3.98
Air and gas compressors 3563 1.20 1.20 Stable C 4.49 3.98
Speed changers, drives, and gears 3566 2.03 2.11 Stable B 6.41 5.73
Transformers 3612 2.86 2.32 Stable C 31.72 33.14
Motors and generators 3621 0.04 0.24 Stable F 23.77 23.16
Process control instruments 3823 1.04 1.10 Stable C 0.39 -0.66
Fluid meters and counting devices 3824 1.65 2.64 Stable C 0.39 -0.66
Instruments to measure electricity 3825 1.42 1.48 Stable F- 49.52 52.61

1 Average product price changes are calculated from the producer price index for each 4-digit SIC (standard industrial classification) industry from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

2 Analyses of each industry’s direct manufacturing cost changes are from Thinking Cap Solutions, Inc.’s proprietary Industry Cost Escalation (ICE) model. The “grade” indicates that recent price/cost changes have produced record high (A+) margins to average margins (C) to record low (F-) margins for 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.

3 Growth in U.S. end markets data are from the ICE model and are estimates of output for the domestic end markets which purchase a given industry’s products.

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