Manufacturing Increased Production in January

Durable and nondurable goods output rose 0.8% and 1.1%, respectively, and manufacturing capacity utilization bounced back from a 15-month low, to 77.7% in January from 77.1% in December. Ups and downs: Manufacturing production data were led by significant growth in apparel and leather goods, nonmetallic mineral products, textiles, food and machinery, among other categories. Categories [...]

2023-03-02T10:50:00+00:00March 2nd, 2023|

Environmental Protection Agency

The Environmental Protection Agency is considering a new rule that would impose stricter air standards on particulate matter known as PM2.5 (i.e., particles that measure two and a half micrometers or less in diameter) . This rule would enact significant top-down restrictions, forcing manufacturers to change their operations abruptly and without any support.

2023-03-02T10:47:14+00:00March 2nd, 2023|

President’s State of the Union

Manufacturing “was one of the first topics addressed in the president’s annual speech. Biden boasted of several legislative feats in 2022—particularly on infrastructure and investments in cutting-edge production facilities—while pressing Congress to ‘finish the job’ and ensure the U.S. became a global manufacturing leader.” “Instead of the Biden administration’s misguided suggestions for restrictions on pharmaceutical [...]

2023-03-02T10:46:21+00:00March 2nd, 2023|

Robust Labor Market, but Slower Manufacturing Demand per NAM

Manufacturing employment rose 19,000 in January, starting the new year by continuing the solid growth seen in the past two years. In 2022, the sector hired 396,000 workers, the most of any year since 1994. Currently, the manufacturing sector has 12,999,000 employees, the most since November 2008. The average hourly earnings of production and nonsupervisory [...]

2023-03-02T10:45:19+00:00March 2nd, 2023|

Non-Compete Clauses

The Federal Trade Commission has proposed a rule to ban noncompete clauses in employment contracts. The rule does not directly apply to all types of employment restrictions, but some restrictions, such as nondisclosure agreements, could be subject to the rule if they are broad enough in scope. Many manufacturers use noncompete agreements to ensure that [...]

2023-03-02T10:44:31+00:00March 2nd, 2023|

U.S. Economy 2023

The U.S. economy’s growth slowed slightly to a 2.9% annual rate in the fourth quarter of 2022, down from a 3.2% annual rate in the third quarter, according to The Wall Street Journal (subscription). Output increases: “Economic output grew 1% in the fourth quarter of 2022 compared with a year earlier, the Commerce Department said. [...]

2023-03-02T10:30:51+00:00March 2nd, 2023|

2022 End of Year Review

Manufacturing production ended the year on a negative note, with output declining sharply in both November and December, down 1.1% and 1.3%, respectively. It was the slowest level of production in the sector since September 2021. As such, manufacturers struggled amid slowing global growth and ongoing geopolitical and economic uncertainties, mirroring data seen in other [...]

2023-03-02T10:30:05+00:00March 2nd, 2023|


Overall wage growth outpaced consumer inflation in 2022, with Black Americans, young people and those with the lowest incomes receiving the largest wage increases, according to The Wall Street Journal (subscription). The trend: Consumer inflation stood at 7.1% in the fourth quarter of 2022—however, with median weekly earnings increasing by 7.4% year-over-year for all workers [...]

2023-03-02T10:28:37+00:00March 2nd, 2023|

International Import Information (courtesy of Dean Warehouse)

The “new normal” is looking a lot like the old normal as U.S. imports continue to fall. Volumes began declining sharply in September and were already close to 2019 levels by the end of last year. They’re expected to pull even with pre-COVID numbers this month and next. Port trackers forecast that import volumes in [...]

2023-01-13T12:04:10+00:00January 13th, 2023|

NAM Manufacturing Outlook

In the Q4 2022 NAM Manufacturers’ Outlook Survey, 68.9% of respondents felt either somewhat or very positive in their company outlook, down from 75.6% in the third quarter. It was the weakest reading since the third quarter of 2020, with growth slowing notably across the board. Indeed, it was the first reading below the historical [...]

2023-01-13T12:02:37+00:00January 13th, 2023|
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