AMT, NAM FORM PARTNERSHIP TO PROMOTE MANUFACTURING MCLEAN, VA—The Association For Manufacturing Technology (AMT) announced that it is joining forces with the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) to promote the importance of manufacturing and innovation in the U.S. economy. This historic partnership will bring the organizations together in support of the premier manufacturing technology show in the Americas—IMTS 2010— The International Manufacturing Technology Show, sponsored by AMT and held at Chicago’s McCormick Place, September 13-18, 2010. “AMT and NAM are two of the most important voices in the world of manufacturing today,” says Douglas K. Woods, president of AMT. “Collectively, our members represent every stage of the production process— from the mind of the design engineer to the shop and factory floor to the global marketplace. Together, we want to underscore the importance of a strong manufacturing sector to longterm economic growth and national security. IMTS 2010—the most important manufacturing event in America—is an ideal launching pad for our industry partnership.” NAM’s President and CEO John Engler will give a keynote address in the Emerging Technology Center on day two of IMTS, September 14. Engler will highlight how investment in innovation, technology and technical skills are critical to a strong U.S. manufacturing sector. The former governor of Michigan also will provide insights on how the U. S. and states can create an economic climate that encourages innovation. “We are pleased to partner with AMT on IMTS 2010, where companies will see the latest breakthroughs in manufacturing technology. Innovation along with research and development has long helped manufacturing in the United States maintain its global leadership,” says Engler. “But while we continue to stand strong as the number one manufacturing economy in the world, we face strong competition from other countries. We’ve recently released “A Manufacturing Strategy for Jobs and a More Competitive America” which provides a vision and clear plan for what policies lawmakers can adopt and advocate in order to keep manufacturing successful and competitive in an ever growing global marketplace.” This, coupled with AMT’s Manufacturing Mandate calling for a federal policy of collaboration between government, industry and academia to place incentives on innovation and R&D in new products and manufacturing technologies; assure the availability of capital; increase global competitiveness; minimize structural cost burdens; and enhance and build a better educated and trained “smartforce,” make a strong statement calling for action to support manufacturing. IMTS 2010 is the place more than 92,000 industrial decision-makers come to get ideas and find answers to their manufacturing problems and Challenges. From the more than 1,100 exhibits focusing on manufacturing technology to the IMTS Industry & Technology Conference and the NIMS Student Summit, IMTS is all about educating manufacturing professionals from all over the world. DEMAND SPARKS GROWTH IN USED, RENTAL TEST EQUIPMENT MARKETS MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA—High availability is one of the prominent factors driving growth in the North American used and rental general-purpose test equipment markets. End users are contemplating rent/lease generalpurpose test equipment when the term of requirement is short. The entry of OEMs into the used equipment market has enhanced quality standards for used general-purpose test equipment, providing a favorable environment for trading the same. Demand from the aerospace segment has revved up prospects for this market. New analysis from Frost & Sullivan North American Used and Rental General-purpose Test Equipment Markets, finds that the market earned revenues of $605 million in 2009 and estimates this to reach $787 million in 2015. The study covers electronic counters, oscilloscopes, network analyzers, spectrum analyzers, signal generators, power meters and multimeters. “Research indicates that there is increasing acceptance of used test equipment in the aerospace and defense (A&D) industry as it can be well integrated with the existing system,” says Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Prathima Bommakanti. “Another positive factor for used general-purpose test equipment in the A&D industry is users’ preference for replacement with the same type of equipment to avoid complexities with reconfiguration.” Due to the economic slowdown, end users prefer to make operating expenses (OPEX) rather than capital expenses (CAPEX) whenever necessary. CAPEX is not an option unless the usage of the equipment is highly critical. The cost saving factor boosts the appeal for used general-purpose test equipment. End users can save around 20-50% of the cost of new general-purpose test equipment. However, the economic slowdown since 2008 has caused a measure of Angst for leading suppliers. Despite consolidation and an expected growth rate of more than 3% in 2010, participants opine that the market is not yet out of the woods. The market is flooded with new equipment, and OEMs are offering them at severely discounted prices that are almost the same as the price of used equipment. This has impacted demand in the used general-purpose test equipment market. The supply vs. demand ratio had a huge impact on the pricing of both new and used equipment. Intensifying price pressure is another factor impeding market progression. “The highly price-conscious nature of the industrial customer constantly places pressure on the used generalpurpose test equipment suppliers to offer discounts and reduce prices,” says Bommakanti. “This restricts the revenue growth potential of this market in the long term.” In such a scenario, customers are being driven to scrutinize suppliers’ cost structures, thereby emphasizing the need for operational efficiency. Apart from cost, quick delivery of equipment and initial training are the key criteria for end users when choosing a used/rental general-purpose test equipment supplier. Commendable customer service is vital to enable successful business outcomes. Savvy suppliers are providing value added services, such as calibration certificates and guarantees, which up the attraction quotient for used equipment. Customers also are embracing robust Web services. KEYNOTE SPEAKER SET FOR INFUSION 2010 CHANTILLY, VA—InfinityQS International, a provider of quality control software solutions, announced that Dr. Donald J. Wheeler will be the keynote speaker at its fourth annual user conference—Infusion 2010. Infusion will be held Oct. 24 to 27 at the Westin Grand Hotel in Washington, D.C. For 30 years, Wheeler has been teaching quality professionals how to get the most out of their data. He has influenced companies and organizations around the world through his seminars, books and publications. He has conducted more than 1,000 seminars in 16 countries on five continents. In addition to presenting the keynote address, Wheeler will deliver a special presentation on sampling strategies for quality data. Infusion 2010 is a three-day user conference designed to advance attendees’ knowledge of the InfinityQS quality system through the exploration of the latest and most innovative tools and techniques. Attendees will have the opportunity to network with other InfinityQS users, discussing best practices and sharing strategies for success. The three-track conference agenda includes hands-on training from InfinityQS experts, customer presentations on best practices, and tools and techniques that address common challenges in quality management. In addition to conference sessions, Infusion offers one-on-one consultations with InfinityQS staff as well as several networking events. “InfinityQS has a first-rate reputation among the users in the field, and I’m honored to contribute my expertise to the dynamic program of this year’s event,” says Wheeler.For more information on Infusion 2010, visit www.infinityqs.com/infusion. REGIONAL MANUFACTURING ACTIVITY CONTINUES TO EXPAND PHILADELPHIA—Results from the Business Outlook Survey suggest that regional manufacturing activity continued to expand in July but has slowed over the past two months. Surveyed firms reported a decline in new orders in July compared with June. Employment showed a slight improvement in July. The survey’s broad indicators of future activity continue to suggest that the region’s manufacturing executives expect growth in business over the next six months, but optimism has waned in recent months. The survey’s broadest measure of manufacturing conditions, the diffusion index of current activity, decreased from a reading of 8 in June to 5.1 in July. The index, although still positive and suggesting growth, has fallen for two consecutive months. Indexes for new orders and shipments also suggest a slowing this month: The new orders index fell 13 points, to its first negative reading in 12 months, and the shipments index decreased 10 points but remained positive. Indicating weakness, indexes for both delivery times and unfilled orders fell and were in negative territory this month. Firms indicated a slight increase in employment in July. The percentage of firms reporting increases in employment (13%) narrowly edged out the percentage of firms reporting decreases (9%). Indexes for both employment and average workweek were slightly positive this month after registering negative readings in June. On balance, firms reported declines in prices for their own manufactured goods: Slightly more firms reported decreases in prices (16%) than reported increases (8%). The largest percentage, 76%, reported no change in prices for their manufactured goods. Firms reported somewhat less cost pressures over the past two months. Although the prices paid index increased 3 points in July, it remained 22 points below its reading of just two months prior. The future general activity index remained positive for the 19th consecutive month but fell 15 points, to a reading of 25.0, its lowest in 16 months. The future new orders and shipments indexes also declined, falling 22 and 13 points, respectively. For the 15th consecutive month, the percentage of firms expecting employment to increase over the next six months (30%) exceeded the percentage expecting declines (17%). The future employment index decreased 7 points and is at its lowest level in eight months. In special questions for July, firms were asked about seasonal plant shutdowns or slowdowns during the summer. About 25% of the surveyed firms indicated that it was normal to schedule such slowdowns during the summer months, nearly the same as in the previous year. About one-third indicated that they would schedule them this year, compared with 49% last year. Forty-eight percent of the firms scheduling shutdowns/slowdowns indicated that production decreases for July would be greater than usual; however, 62% indicated so last year. Nearly 44% indicated production declines for August would be greater than usual, compared with 49% last year. According to respondents to the July Business Outlook Survey, regional manufacturing activity continues to expand, but indicators for new orders and shipments have been suggesting a slowdown over the previous two months. Firms reported declines in prices for their products and some moderation in input price pressures over the past few months. Firms expect continued growth in their manufacturing business over the next six months, but along with a slide in current indicators, confidence slipped noticeably in July. MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY CONSUMPTION UP 52.9% IN 2010 MCLEAN, VA—May U.S. manufacturing technology consumption totaled $178.34 million, according to the American Machine Tool Distributors’ Association (AMTDA) and the Association For Manufacturing Technology (AMT). This total, as reported by companies participating in the United States Manufacturing Technology Consumption (USMTC) program, was down 22.9% from April but up 58.6% from the total of $112.42 million reported for May 2009. With a year-to-date total of $966.63 million, 2010 is up 52.9% compared with 2009. These numbers and all data in this report are based on the totals of actual data reported by companies participating in the USMTC program. “While we would like to see first quarter growth rates continue, we are not surprised by the typical second quarter ebb and flow in capital spending,” notes Peter Borden, AMTDA president. “We have seen an additional month of substantial orders which helps to confirm that a sustainable recovery is taking place despite the buzz of those forecasting a W-shaped rebound. Industry forecasts for the year have been revised slightly upward by many sources and, if Congress passes the bonus depreciation allowance, this could accelerate growth even further.” The United States Manufacturing Technology Consumption (USMTC) report, jointly compiled by the two trade associations representing the production and distribution of manufacturing technology, provides regional and national U.S. consumption data of domestic and imported machine tools and related equipment. Analysis of manufacturing technology consumption provides a reliable leading economic indicator as manufacturing industries invest in capital metalworking equipment to increase capacity and improve productivity. U.S. manufacturing technology consumption is also reported on a regional basis for five geographic breakdowns of the United States. HONDA PLANT PRODUCES 10 MILLION VEHICLES MARYSVILLE, OH—In July, the Marysville Auto Plant became the first Honda plant outside Japan to manufacture 10 million vehicles with the production of a Honda Accord Sedan. Honda began local auto production in November 1982 at the Marysville plant with an Accord Sedan and has continued producing that model along with various others. Identified with a magnetic sign on its hood, associates followed progress of the vehicle in production until it came off the assembly line as a completed product. The milestone Accord was immediately moved into the plant’s West Cafeteria for display alongside the first generation of the Accord produced at the plant. “Production of this 10 millionth automobile is the result of the shared commitment to our customers, demonstrated over the past 28 years by all of the associates who have worked at the Marysville Auto Plant through the years,” says Hidenobu Iwata, president and CEO of Honda of America Mfg., and leader of Honda’s production operations in North America. “With the support of many other Honda business units, domestic suppliers and our other business partners, Honda associates have demonstrated many times their ability to overcome great challenges and to improve Honda’s competitive characteristics.”
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