May PMI ticks up slightly as manufacturing remains solid

The Purchasing Manufacturers' Index (PMI) rose slightly to 54.9%, marking eight years of economic growth.

06/02/2017


Image courtesy: Bob Vavra, CFE MediaU.S. manufacturing continued its resurgence in 2017 as the purchasing manufacturers' index (PMI) rose slightly in May to 54.9%. The increase of 0.1 percentage points ended a two-month decline and signaled that the manufacturing sector remains on solid ground. The PMI has been above the 50% growth threshold for 11 of the last 12 months, and has not dipped below 54% since November 2016.

"Comments from the panel generally reflect stable to growing business conditions, with new orders, employment and inventories of raw materials all growing in May compared to April," said Bradley Holcomb, chairman of the Manufacturing Business Survey Committee for the Institute for Supply Management (ISM), which publishes the monthly PMI index. "The slowing of pricing pressure, especially in basic commodities, should have a positive impact on margins and buying policies as this moderation moves up the value chain."

In May, 15 of the 18 industries surveyed showed growth in May. Committee members cited stable global and domestic business as the reason manufacturing optimism remains high. Among the committee comments:

  • "Sales have picked up compared to the last two months. Customer demand has increased." (Plastics & Rubber Products)
  • "Economy is still strong, but (the) political climate can change things very quickly." (Transportation Equipment)
  • "Global price increases for commodities." (Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components)
  • "Business (sales/production) is steady. Pricing pressures on raw materials. Skilled labor in short supply." (Furniture & Related Products)
  • "Our business is definitely paying attention to developments with the Canadian lumber tariff announcement. The final outcome could change our fiber pricing." (Paper Products)
  • "Business conditions are steady, and with competition increasing, it's making negotiations even more intense to reduce costs." (Machinery)
  • "Business is booming, and getting direct employees is increasingly difficult." (Fabricated Metal Products)
  • "Difficult to find qualified labor for factory positions." (Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products)

May marked another milestone for the index. It has now been eight years since the index registered a reading below 43.3%, which is the index's threshold to indicate growth in the overall economy. The May PMI figure translates to an annual growth rate of 3.7% in domestic gross products, according to ISM officials.



Top Plant
The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America.
Product of the Year
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
System Integrator of the Year
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
June 2018
2018 Lubrication Guide, Motor and maintenance management, Control system migration
May 2018
Electrical standards, robots and Lean manufacturing, and how an aluminum packaging plant is helping community growth.
April 2018
2017 Product of the Year winners, retrofitting a press, IMTS and Hannover Messe preview, natural refrigerants, testing steam traps
June 2018
Machine learning, produced water benefits, programming cavity pumps
April 2018
ROVs, rigs, and the real time; wellsite valve manifolds; AI on a chip; analytics use for pipelines
February 2018
Focus on power systems, process safety, electrical and power systems, edge computing in the oil & gas industry
Spring 2018
Burners for heat-treating furnaces, CHP, dryers, gas humidification, and more
April 2018
Implementing a DCS, stepper motors, intelligent motion control, remote monitoring of irrigation systems
February 2018
Setting internal automation standards

Annual Salary Survey

After two years of economic concerns, manufacturing leaders once again have homed in on the single biggest issue facing their operations:

It's the workers—or more specifically, the lack of workers.

The 2017 Plant Engineering Salary Survey looks at not just what plant managers make, but what they think. As they look across their plants today, plant managers say they don’t have the operational depth to take on the new technologies and new challenges of global manufacturing.

Read more: 2017 Salary Survey

The Maintenance and Reliability Coach's blog
Maintenance and reliability tips and best practices from the maintenance and reliability coaches at Allied Reliability Group.
One Voice for Manufacturing
The One Voice for Manufacturing blog reports on federal public policy issues impacting the manufacturing sector. One Voice is a joint effort by the National Tooling and Machining...
The Maintenance and Reliability Professionals Blog
The Society for Maintenance and Reliability Professionals an organization devoted...
Machine Safety
Join this ongoing discussion of machine guarding topics, including solutions assessments, regulatory compliance, gap analysis...
Research Analyst Blog
IMS Research, recently acquired by IHS Inc., is a leading independent supplier of market research and consultancy to the global electronics industry.
Marshall on Maintenance
Maintenance is not optional in manufacturing. It’s a profit center, driving productivity and uptime while reducing overall repair costs.
Lachance on CMMS
The Lachance on CMMS blog is about current maintenance topics. Blogger Paul Lachance is president and chief technology officer for Smartware Group.
Electrical Safety Update
This digital report explains how plant engineers need to take greater care when it comes to electrical safety incidents on the plant floor.
Maintenance & Safety
The maintenance journey has been a long, slow trek for most manufacturers and has gone from preventive maintenance to predictive maintenance.
IIoT: Machines, Equipment, & Asset Management
Articles in this digital report highlight technologies that enable Industrial Internet of Things, IIoT-related products and strategies.
Randy Steele
Maintenance Manager; California Oils Corp.
Matthew J. Woo, PE, RCDD, LEED AP BD+C
Associate, Electrical Engineering; Wood Harbinger
Randy Oliver
Control Systems Engineer; Robert Bosch Corp.
Data Centers: Impacts of Climate and Cooling Technology
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
Safety First: Arc Flash 101
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
Critical Power: Hospital Electrical Systems
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
click me