Week 49 in Manufacturing News

US manufacturing contraction worsens in November; UK factories are laying off workers at fastest rate for seven years; German manufacturing downturn drags into final quarter; 2020: Future of manufacturing technology.

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US manufacturing contraction worsens in November

The Institute for Supply Management said in its monthly survey the index measuring domestic factory activity fell to 48.1 last month from 48.3 in October amid weakness in new orders and exports.

It was the fourth consecutive month of contraction for the US manufacturing sector, though it remains in a stronger position than in September when the index was at its worst level in a decade. Economists expected it to hit 49.2 last month, according to a Thomson Reuters poll. A reading below 50 indicates contraction.

Source: Financial Times.

UK factories are laying off workers at fastest rate for seven years

The monthly UK manufacturing snapshot from IHS Markit/Cips shows the headline purchasing managers’ index (PMI) slipped to 48.9 in November from 49.6 in October. It has been stuck for seven months below the 50 mark that separates expansion from contraction.

Employment in the sector fell for the eighth month in a row and the pace of job losses was the steepest since September 2012 as manufacturers sought to reduce their costs.

New orders fell for the seventh consecutive month, reflecting tougher conditions in the UK and overseas. The drop in new export orders was among the steepest of the past seven years.

Source: The Guardian.

German manufacturing downturn drags into final quarter

German industrial orders fell unexpectedly in October as demand at home and from outside the euro zone weakened, suggesting a manufacturing downturn will continue to hold back growth in Europe’s largest economy in the final quarter.

Contracts for German-made goods were down 0.4% from the previous month, the Statistics Office said on Thursday. That undershot a Reuters consensus forecast for a 0.3% rise.

Source: Euronews.

2020: Future of manufacturing technology

Which technologies warrant the often-significant resource investments required to navigate the ongoing digital transformation and embrace what Industry 4.0 promises.

  • Advancing robotics and automation
  • Embracing additive manufacturing and 3D printing
  • Working with wearables
  • Recognizing growing need for 5G
  • Continued IoT investments

Source: IndustryWeek.