Rockford Manufacturers May Face Headwinds

Being in a global marketplace, as many of Rockford area manufacturers are, has it’s good points and unfortunately, it’s bad points.  Today the UK Guardian reports:

Britain and the rest of Europe are heading for a deeper recession after figures showed manufacturing output slumped at its fastest pace for three years.

While we all enjoyed a strong 1st quarter, I know many local manufacturers are seeing a slowing of incoming orders.  We must remember that as exporters into the very markets that the Guardian article reports on, this will eventually impact us.  Here is another excerpt:

All four of the largest eurozone nations are now reporting worryingly sharp downturns in their manufacturing sectors.

The article continues with several country outlooks:

Germany:A downturn in Germany’s export bonanza to the far east triggered a slump to 45.2 in its manufacturing PMI. New orders fell, especially from abroad, forcing the sharpest slowdown since June 2009. The price of raw materials also declined, but not enough to stop firms shedding workers.

France:The French manufacturing PMI worsened in May to 44.7 after registering 46.9 in April. New orders fell at the sharpest rate since April 2009. Jobs and investment were top of the list of business cuts.

Spain:Spain’s manufacturing sector contracted to the lowest level since May 2009. The decrease from 43.5 in April to 42.0 was blamed on poor domestic and eurozone demand.

Italy: A lack of domestic demand meant Italy’s manufacturing PMI continued its long slump last month, though at a slightly slower pace after a rise to 44.8 from 43.8 in April.

Greece: The Greek PMI index rose to an eight-month high but still remained the lowest in the eurozone at 43.1. In April, it reached 40.7.

Ireland: Dublin’s export boom continued after a moderate expansion in manufacturing activity to 51.2, from 50.1 in April. The major driver was new orders, which increased for the fourth month in a row and pushed up employment for a third month.

Without a clear plan from Brussels, Paris and Berlin over how to exit the crisis, manufacturers are expected to continue cutting orders and jobs over the coming months.

I’ll take another look at the export situation in my next post.

For the complete Guardian article, see it here.