Manufacturing sector continues strong growth

Milwaukee-area manufacturing activity continued to grow during June following a significant jump in activity in May.

The Marquette-ISM Report on Manufacturing showed the seasonally adjusted Purchasing Managers Index was at 60.6 in June, down from 63.5 in May.

Any reading above 50 indicates growth, while below 50 suggests contraction. The Milwaukee PMI leaped from 47.3 in April to the May reading of 63.5. The index has been above 50 for eight of the past 10 months.

Respondents in the June survey said:

  • No major supply chain issues at this time.
  • No change in orders up or down for U.S. customers, but seeing inquiries on the ability to meet an increase in the future.

New orders, production, employment and inventories were growing on a seasonally adjusted basis in June, while supplier deliveries slowed. On an unadjusted basis, customers’ inventories were declining this month, while prices, backlog of orders, exports and imports were growing.

Respondents said:

  • Customer summer shutdowns.
  • Seasonal slowdown as a reason for change (vs. seasonal shutdown or something else that doesn’t fit.)
  • We’ve been at a high level for months.
  • Need to stock to support short lead time.

In June, manufacturers reported blue collar employment was growing, at 59.8 on the diffusion index, and white collar employment was also growing, at 51.2.

About employment, they said:

  • Port strike.
  • West coast capacity in contract negotiation phase.
  • Really bad customer service right now!

In the six month outlook on business conditions, positive expectations saw a decline from May. About 25 percent of those surveyed expect positive conditions in the second half of the year. Another 62.5 percent expect conditions to remain the same, while 12.5 percent expect conditions to worsen in the next six months.

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