Report: Manufacturing growth slows, remains positive

August 29, 2014

MILWAUKEE ó The growth in manufacturing activity in southeastern Wisconsin declined slightly in August, according to the Marquette-ISM Report on Manufacturing, but the index continued to show an expanding market.

The August index from the Marquette Center for Supply Chain Management was 59.63, well above the 50-level indicating positive territory. The index has been above 50 for 10 of the past 12 months. In July it measured 63.87 and 60.57 in June.

The report is similar to the national report published by the Institute for Supply Management, but is not directly comparable. 

Areas seeing a drop form July included new orders, production, supplier deliveries, inventories, customer inventories and imports. Only inventories and customer inventories were reported as declining overall.

Respondents indicated issues with lead times and supplier deliveries have been the biggest issues, including unrealistic expectations for lead times. One respondent said the company was on track to finish 3 to 4 percent ahead of last year if current trends continue.

Overall, respondents had positive attitudes toward business conditions in the next six months. Approximately 45 percent expect positive conditions, compared with 37.5 percent in July. Half of respondents expect conditions to stay the same, compared with 56.3 percent in July.

The reportís diffusion index, which tries to account for bias towards the positive or negative side, moved up from 65.6 percent to 70 percent.