Week 40 in Manufacturing News

U.S. factory orders gain steam as manufacturing keeps humming; UK manufacturing growth slows amid labour shortages and supply chain strain; EU’s costly plan to close the semiconductor gap; German industrial production fell more than expected in August on supply shortages

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U.S. Factory Orders Gain Steam as Manufacturing Keeps Humming

New orders for U.S.-made goods accelerated in August, pointing to sustained strength in manufacturing even as economic growth appeared to have slowed in the third quarter because of shortages of raw materials and labor.

The Commerce Department said on Monday that factory orders increased 1.2% in August. Data for July was revised higher to show orders rising 0.7% instead of gaining 0.4% as previously reported. Orders have now increased for four straight months. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast factory orders gaining 1.0%. Orders shot up 18.0% on a year-on-year basis.

Source: Reuters.

UK Manufacturing Growth Slows Amid Labour Shortages and Supply Chain Strain

The UK’s manufacturing sector saw growth slow last month on the back of surging material and staff shortages, according to new figures.

The closely watched IHS Markit CIPS Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) returned a reading of 57.1 for September, down from 60.3 in August. Any reading above 50 implies growth.

Source: Independent.

EU’s Costly Plan to Close the Semiconductor Gap

As semiconductor shortages continue to force carmakers to cut back production, the EU’s internal market commissioner Thierry Breton visited Japan and South Korea last week in search of international partnerships for the bloc’s planned “European Chips Act”.

Supply chain disruptions have focused attention on microchips as the heart of the digital economy — crucial to artificial intelligence, quantum computing and the “internet of things”. Access to the most sophisticated chips is important not just for industry but for military security. Yet most production is in the hands of China, Taiwan, South Korea, and the US.

Source: The Financial Times

German Industrial Production Fell More than Expected in August on Supply Shortages

German industrial production declined in August much more than expected, amid widespread supply shortages, statistics office Destatis said Thursday.

Total industrial output–comprising production in manufacturing, energy and construction–fell 4.0% in August from July in calendar-adjusted terms. Economists had forecast a 0.2% drop, according to a poll by The Wall Street Journal. Destatis upwardly revised July’s industrial production on-month increase, to 1.3% from 1.0% earlier.

Source: MarketWatch