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First Half Orders for Machine Tools in U.S. Run 27% Behind Year-Ago.

June statistics from the U.S. Machine Tool Consumption series of reports show orders in America fell to $253.22-million during June, down 7% from the previous month and down 29% from the corresponding June a year ago.

For the first six months of 2001, orders for both metalcutting and metalforming machines came to $1.49-billion, putting this year 27% behind the first half of last year, which, in turn, was up barely 3% from the first six months of 1999.
 Commenting on the statistics compiled by his organization and the AMT,
 AMTDA president Ralph Nappi noted, "Future manufacturing investment will
 depend on how quickly our economy will react to the fiscal and monetary
 policies currently being implemented by the government."

Year-to-date shortfalls compared to last year are running in double-digit percentages in four of the five regions covered in the survey of builders and distributors.


California's energy worries seem to have made the West's orders downturn worst. With first-half orders at $199.08-million, that region is running 37% below the comparable figure for 2000.

James Kreager, owner of Kreager Machine Tool Corp. (Redwood City, Calif.), serves Silicon Valley and reports that some in his region are using the term "depression." "Thank goodness we were fortunate enough to have a healthy backlog," he says.

The South's first half is 33% behind year-ago; the Midwest's trails by 32%; and the Northeast's is lagging by 24%. First-half-2001 orders in the Central region are also down, but only by 4%.

Orders taken in June by region are posted on the accompanying map; percentages there are each area's portions of the entire national order total.
Gross New Orders for U.S. Consumption
All Machine Tools, June 2001

West Central South east Midwest

$30-M $81-M $35-M $47-M $61-M
 12% 32% 14% 18% 24%

By machine class, June brought orders for $235.10-million in cutting machines and $18.12-million for forming machines. For the year-to-date, builders of presses and other forming machines are seeing order levels less than half(-53%) those of last year. Forming machines' unit prices average slightly higher than those of cutting machines.

Amer. Machine Tool Distributors' Assn., Rockville, Md. 301-739-1200.

AMT -- The Assn. for Mfg. Technology, McLean, Va. 703-893-2900.
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Publication:Metalworking Insiders' Report
Date:Aug 10, 2001
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