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Manufacturing PMI® at 46.7%; November 2023 Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®

New Orders and Backlogs Contracting; Employment and Production Contracting; Supplier Deliveries Faster; Raw Materials Inventories Contracting; Customers' Inventories Too High; Prices Decreasing; Exports and Imports Contracting

TEMPE, Ariz., Dec. 1, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Economic activity in the manufacturing sector contracted in November for the 13th consecutive month following a 28-month period of growth, say the nation's supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®.

The report was issued today by Timothy R. Fiore, CPSM, C.P.M., Chair of the Institute for Supply Management® (ISM®) Manufacturing Business Survey Committee:

"The Manufacturing PMI® registered 46.7 percent in November, unchanged from the 46.7 percent recorded in October. The overall economy continued in contraction for a second month after one month of weak expansion preceded by nine months of contraction and a 30-month period of expansion before that. (A Manufacturing PMI® above 48.7 percent, over a period of time, generally indicates an expansion of the overall economy.) The New Orders Index remained in contraction territory at 48.3 percent, 2.8 percentage points higher than the figure of 45.5 percent recorded in October. The Production Index reading of 48.5 percent is a 1.9-percentage point decrease compared to October's figure of 50.4 percent. The Prices Index registered 49.9 percent, up 4.8 percentage points compared to the reading of 45.1 percent in October. The Backlog of Orders Index registered 39.3 percent, 2.9 percentage points lower than the October reading of 42.2 percent. The Employment Index registered 45.8 percent, down 1 percentage point from the 46.8 percent reported in October.

"The Supplier Deliveries Index figure of 46.2 percent is 1.5 percentage points lower than the 47.7 percent recorded in October. (Supplier Deliveries is the only ISM® Report On Business® index that is inversed; a reading of above 50 percent indicates slower deliveries, which is typical as the economy improves and customer demand increases.)

"The Inventories Index increased by 1.5 percentage points to 44.8 percent; the October reading was 43.3 percent. The New Export Orders Index reading of 46 percent is 3.4 percentage points lower than October's figure of 49.4 percent. The Imports Index remained in contraction territory, registering 46.2 percent, 1.7 percentage points lower than the 47.9 percent reported in October."

Fiore continues, "The U.S. manufacturing sector continued to contract at the same rate in November as compared to October, again posting a reading of 46.7 percent. Companies are still managing outputs appropriately as order softness continues. Demand eased, with the (1) New Orders Index contracting but at a slower rate, (2) New Export Orders Index dropping further into contraction territory, and (3) Backlog of Orders Index dropping below 40 percent (39.3 percent) to remain in strong contraction territory. The Customers' Inventories Index reading moved into expansion, toward the upper end of 'about right' territory, not accommodative for future production. Output/Consumption (measured by the Production and Employment indexes) was negative, with a combined 2.9-percentage point downward impact on the Manufacturing PMI® calculation. Panelists' companies slightly reduced month-over-month production and took more actions to reduce head counts, primarily using layoffs and attrition. Inputs — defined as supplier deliveries, inventories, prices and imports — continued to accommodate future demand growth. The Supplier Deliveries Index indicated faster deliveries for the 14th straight month, at a faster rate compared to October, and the Inventories Index moved upward while remaining in moderate contraction territory. The Prices Index remained in 'decreasing' territory (but just barely), signifying price stability as a result of energy markets easing, though offset by increases in the steel markets. Manufacturing supplier lead times continue to decrease, a positive for future economic activity.

"Of the six biggest manufacturing industries, two — Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; and Transportation Equipment — registered growth in November.

"Demand remains soft, and production execution is slightly down compared to October as panelists' companies continue to manage outputs, material inputs and — more aggressively — labor costs. Suppliers continue to have capacity. Sixty-five percent of manufacturing gross domestic product (GDP) contracted in November, down from 75 percent in October. More importantly, the share of sector GDP registering a composite PMI® calculation at or below 45 percent — a good barometer of overall manufacturing weakness — was 54 percent in November, compared to 35 percent in October and 6 percent in September. Three of the top six industries by contribution to manufacturing GDP were at or below 45 percent, same as the previous month," says Fiore.

The three manufacturing industries that reported growth in November are: Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; and Transportation Equipment. The 14 industries reporting contraction in November — in the following order — are: Paper Products; Printing & Related Support Activities; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Computer & Electronic Products; Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Textile Mills; Machinery; Primary Metals; Furniture & Related Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Chemical Products; Fabricated Metal Products; Wood Products; and Plastics & Rubber Products.

WHAT RESPONDENTS ARE SAYING

  • "Economy appears to be slowing dramatically. Customer orders are pushing out, and all efforts are being made to right-size inventory levels, both to mitigate carrying costs on pushed-out orders and to load up on inventory where costs are exploding, like cold-rolled steel." [Computer & Electronic Products]
  • "Starting to feel softening in the economy, with labor still a challenge to backfill critical roles. The 2024 forecast looks challenging, specially from a cost perspective." [Chemical Products]
  • "Nearly all microchip supply issues have been resolved, finally bringing an end to the three-year chip shortage. Material prices are remaining relatively flat. Supply chain issues continue in several areas, resulting from difficulties during the United Auto Workers (UAW) strike." [Transportation Equipment]
  • "Our executives have requested that we bring down inventory levels considerably, and it has started causing customer shortages. Both finished goods, and low inventories of raw and packing materials are creating issues in fulfilling customer demand, and in some cases causing serious (production) delays." [Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products]
  • "The end of the major construction season and an early pullback in customer capital expenditures purchases have resulted in a lower backlog in the fourth quarter." [Machinery]
  • "Automotive sales still impacted by UAW strike. Still waiting for orders to come in, and we also need to work down inventory levels that increased during the strike period. This will most likely happen in December." [Fabricated Metal Products]
  • "Customer orders have pushed into the first quarter of 2024, resulting in inflated end-of-year inventory." [Miscellaneous Manufacturing]
  • "(Our situation is) good but guarded, as next year is hard to predict. There are undertones of uncertainty in the market and the impact of inflation on maintenance and project costs has become apparent." [Nonmetallic Mineral Products]
  • "Customers back online after the UAW strike. Consuming inventory that was built as a strike bank. Still (having) issues with hiring quality candidates for both hourly and salaried positions. Current inventory levels are too high, but the order book remains strong." [Primary Metals]
  • "Elevated financing costs have dampened demand for residential investment. Our business has been negatively impacted through reduced new orders for our products and services. We are purchasing less for production and finished goods inventories." [Wood Products]

 

MANUFACTURING AT A GLANCE

November 2023

Index

Series

Index

Nov

Series

Index

Oct

Percentage

Point

Change

Direction

Rate of

Change

Trend*

(Months)

Manufacturing

PMI®

46.7

46.7

0.0

Contracting

Same

13

New Orders

48.3

45.5

+2.8

Contracting

Slower

15

Production

48.5

50.4

-1.9

Contracting

From Growing

1

Employment

45.8

46.8

-1.0

Contracting

Faster

2

Supplier

Deliveries

46.2

47.7

-1.5

Faster

Faster

14

Inventories

44.8

43.3

+1.5

Contracting

Slower

9

Customers'

Inventories

50.8

48.6

+2.2

Too High

From Too

Low

1

Prices

49.9

45.1

+4.8

Decreasing

Slower

7

Backlog of

Orders

39.3

42.2

-2.9

Contracting

Faster

14

New Export

Orders

46.0

49.4

-3.4

Contracting

Faster

6

Imports

46.2

47.9

-1.7

Contracting

Faster

13

OVERALL ECONOMY

Contracting

Same

2

Manufacturing Sector

Contracting

Same

13

Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business® data is seasonally adjusted for the New Orders, Production, Employment and Inventories indexes.

*Number of months moving in current direction.

COMMODITIES REPORTED UP/DOWN IN PRICE AND IN SHORT SUPPLY

Commodities Up in Price

Cocoa; Electrical Components; Electronic Components (3); Labor — Temporary (3); Natural Gas (5); Polyethylene; Polypropylene (2); Steel (5); Steel — Carbon; Steel — Cold Rolled; and Steel — Hot Rolled.

Commodities Down in Price

Aluminum (6); Corrugated Boxes (4); Crude Oil; Diesel; Nickel; and Steel Products (6).

Commodities in Short Supply

Electrical Components (38); Electrical Equipment (2); Electronic Components (36); and Semiconductors.

Note: The number of consecutive months the commodity is listed is indicated after each item.

NOVEMBER 2023 MANUFACTURING INDEX SUMMARIES

Manufacturing PMI®

The U.S. manufacturing sector contracted in November, as the Manufacturing PMI® registered 46.7 percent, the same figure recorded in October. "This is the 13th month of contraction. All of the five subindexes that directly factor into the Manufacturing PMI® are in contraction territory, up from four in October. The New Orders Index logged its 15th month in contraction territory, but at a slower rate in November. Of the six biggest manufacturing industries, two — Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; and Transportation Equipment — registered growth in November," says Fiore. A reading above 50 percent indicates that the manufacturing sector is generally expanding; below 50 percent indicates that it is generally contracting.

A Manufacturing PMI® above 48.7 percent, over a period of time, generally indicates an expansion of the overall economy. Therefore, the November Manufacturing PMI® indicates the overall economy contracted for a second straight month after one month of growth preceded by nine consecutive months of contraction and 30 months of expansion from June 2020 to November 2022. "The past relationship between the Manufacturing PMI® and the overall economy indicates that the November reading (46.7 percent) corresponds to a change of minus-0.7 percent in real gross domestic product (GDP) on an annualized basis," says Fiore.

THE LAST 12 MONTHS

Month

Manufacturing

PMI®

Month

Manufacturing

PMI®

Nov 2023

46.7

May 2023

46.9

Oct 2023

46.7

Apr 2023

47.1

Sep 2023

49.0

Mar 2023

46.3

Aug 2023

47.6

Feb 2023

47.7

Jul 2023

46.4

Jan 2023

47.4

Jun 2023

46.0

Dec 2022

48.4

Average for 12 months – 47.2

High – 49.0

Low – 46.0

New Orders

ISM®'s New Orders Index contracted for the 15th consecutive month in November, registering 48.3 percent, an increase of 2.8 percentage points compared to October's reading of 45.5 percent. "Of the six largest manufacturing sectors, only Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products reported increased new orders. New order levels contracted at a slower rate compared to October as a result of continuing sluggishness in three capital-focused industries (Computer & Electronic Products; Machinery; and Fabricated Metal Products) that are among the seven biggest by share of manufacturing GDP. The index registered its second-highest reading since August 2022, when the index recorded 50.4 percent," says Fiore. A New Orders Index above 52.7 percent, over time, is generally consistent with an increase in the Census Bureau's series on manufacturing orders (in constant 2000 dollars).

The two manufacturing industries that reported growth in new orders in November are: Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; and Plastics & Rubber Products. Thirteen industries reported a decline in new orders in November, in the following order: Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Textile Mills; Wood Products; Furniture & Related Products; Paper Products; Computer & Electronic Products; Machinery; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Fabricated Metal Products; Chemical Products; Primary Metals; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; and Transportation Equipment.

New Orders

%Higher

%Same

%Lower

Net

Index

Nov 2023

19.5

53.0

27.5

-8.0

48.3

Oct 2023

15.4

58.1

26.5

-11.1

45.5

Sep 2023

18.5

59.2

22.3

-3.8

49.2

Aug 2023

17.2

59.9

22.9

-5.7

46.8

Production

The Production Index dropped into contraction territory in November, registering 48.5 percent, 1.9 percentage points lower than the October reading of 50.4 percent. This follows two months of expansion preceded by one month of "unchanged" status and two months of contraction. "Of the top six industries, two — Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; and Transportation Equipment — expanded in November. Production output in November was marginally down compared to the previous month. Panelists' companies are meeting customer demand, as demonstrated by the Customers' Inventories Index registering above 50 percent, or on the high side of 'about right,' " says Fiore. An index above 52.2 percent, over time, is generally consistent with an increase in the Federal Reserve Board's Industrial Production figures.

The five industries reporting growth in production during the month of November are: Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Transportation Equipment; Plastics & Rubber Products; and Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components. The six industries reporting a decrease in production in November — in the following order — are: Paper Products; Computer & Electronic Products; Chemical Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Machinery; and Primary Metals. Seven industries reported no change in production in November compared to October.

Production

%Higher

%Same

%Lower

Net

Index

Nov 2023

18.4

62.1

19.5

-1.1

48.5

Oct 2023

17.3

62.9

19.8

-2.5

50.4

Sep 2023

21.6

59.9

18.5

+3.1

52.5

Aug 2023

21.0

58.7

20.3

+0.7

50.0

Employment

ISM®'s Employment Index registered 45.8 percent in November, 1 percentage point lower than the October reading of 46.8 percent. "The index indicated employment contracted again in November after one month of expansion and three months of contraction before that. Of the six big manufacturing sectors, three (Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Transportation Equipment; and Chemical Products) expanded. Labor management sentiment at Business Survey Committee respondents' companies continues to indicate a slowdown in hiring and, in November, an increase in staff-reduction activity. Attrition, freezes and layoffs to reduce head counts increased during the period, with layoffs and attrition the primary measures. Panelists' comments were equally split between companies hiring and others reducing their labor forces — a first since such comments have been tracked," says Fiore. An Employment Index above 50.4 percent, over time, is generally consistent with an increase in the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data on manufacturing employment.

Of 18 manufacturing industries, three reported employment growth in November: Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Transportation Equipment; and Chemical Products. The nine industries reporting a decrease in employment in November, in the following order, are: Printing & Related Support Activities; Primary Metals; Paper Products; Textile Mills; Computer & Electronic Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Plastics & Rubber Products; and Machinery. Six industries reported no change in employment in November compared to October.

Employment

%Higher

%Same

%Lower

Net

Index

Nov 2023

9.3

71.3

19.4

-10.1

45.8

Oct 2023

11.7

70.9

17.4

-5.7

46.8

Sep 2023

15.4

68.2

16.4

-1.0

51.2

Aug 2023

14.0

68.0

18.0

-4.0

48.5

Supplier Deliveries

Delivery performance of suppliers to manufacturing organizations was faster for the 14th straight month in November, as the Supplier Deliveries Index registered 46.2 percent, 1.5 percentage points lower than the 47.7 percent reported in October. After registering 52.4 percent in September 2022, the index went into contraction territory in October and has been there since, with an average reading of 45.8 percent over the last 12 months. Of the top six manufacturing industries, only Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products reported slower deliveries, reflecting the industry's seasonality. "Panelists' comments continue to indicate that suppliers' performance is improving," says Fiore. A reading below 50 percent indicates faster deliveries, while a reading above 50 percent indicates slower deliveries.

The three manufacturing industries reporting slower supplier deliveries in November are: Wood Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; and Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products. The nine industries reporting faster supplier deliveries in November — in the following order — are: Paper Products; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Chemical Products; Computer & Electronic Products; Machinery; Primary Metals; Fabricated Metal Products; and Transportation Equipment. Six industries reported no change in delivery performance in November compared to October.

Supplier Deliveries

%Slower

%Same

%Faster

Net

Index

Nov 2023

6.3

79.7

14.0

-7.7

46.2

Oct 2023

9.8

75.7

14.5

-4.7

47.7

Sep 2023

5.8

81.1

13.1

-7.3

46.4

Aug 2023

10.9

75.4

13.7

-2.8

48.6

Inventories

The Inventories Index registered 44.8 percent in November, 1.5 percentage points higher than the 43.3 percent reported in October. "Manufacturing inventories contracted at a slower rate compared to the previous month. Of the six big industries, only Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products increased manufacturing inventories in November, reflecting the industry's seasonality. Panelists' companies continue to manage manufacturing inventory levels down, as demand remains uncertain for the first quarter of 2024," says Fiore. An Inventories Index greater than 44.4 percent, over time, is generally consistent with expansion in the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) figures on overall manufacturing inventories (in chained 2000 dollars).

Of 18 manufacturing industries, three reported higher inventories in November: Nonmetallic Mineral Products; Primary Metals; and Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products. The 14 industries reporting lower inventories in November — in the following order — are: Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Printing & Related Support Activities; Wood Products; Textile Mills; Furniture & Related Products; Machinery; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; Paper Products; Computer & Electronic Products; Fabricated Metal Products; Plastics & Rubber Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Chemical Products; and Transportation Equipment.

Inventories

%Higher

%Same

%Lower

Net

Index

Nov 2023

13.8

59.7

26.5

-12.7

44.8

Oct 2023

12.6

63.8

23.6

-11.0

43.3

Sep 2023

11.7

68.1

20.2

-8.5

45.8

Aug 2023

10.4

70.2

19.4

-9.0

44.0

Customers' Inventories

ISM®'s Customers' Inventories Index registered 50.8 percent in November, up 2.2 percentage points compared to the 48.6 reported in October. The index recorded its highest performance since May 2023, when it registered 51.4 percent. "Customers' inventory levels moved higher, into the upper end of 'just right,' as panelists report their companies' customers have an appropriate amount of their products in inventory. That is considered negative for future production," says Fiore.

The eight industries reporting customers' inventories as too high in November — in the following order — are: Apparel, Leather & Allied Products; Printing & Related Support Activities; Furniture & Related Products; Fabricated Metal Products; Transportation Equipment; Chemical Products; Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components; and Primary Metals. The four industries reporting customers' inventories as too low in November are: Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; Plastics & Rubber Products; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; and Machinery. Six industries reported no change in customers' inventories in November compared to October.

Customers'

Inventories

%

Reporting

%Too

High

%About

Right

%Too

Low

 

Net

 

Index

Nov 2023

76

16.3

69.0

14.7

+1.6

50.8

Oct 2023

75

13.1

71.0

15.9

-2.8

48.6

Sep 2023

76

14.7

64.7

20.6

-5.9

47.1

Aug 2023

75

14.9

67.6

17.5

-2.6

48.7

Prices

The ISM® Prices Index registered 49.9 percent, 4.8 percentage points higher compared to the October reading of 45.1 percent, indicating raw materials prices decreased in November for the seventh consecutive month, though just barely and essentially flat month over month. The index has been in contraction (or "decreasing") territory since May, but a higher reading compared to October indicated a slower rate of price decreases. "Panelists' comments indicate that buyers and suppliers continue to negotiate price levels for 2024, with commodity markets remaining highly volatile. Recent decreases in energy markets are being offset by increases in the steel markets. Two of the top six manufacturing industries (Machinery; and Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products) reported price increases in November. Eighty-four percent of panelists' companies reported 'same' or 'lower' prices in November, compared to 89 percent in October," says Fiore. A Prices Index above 52.9 percent, over time, is generally consistent with an increase in the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Producer Price Index for Intermediate Materials.

In November, the seven industries that reported paying increased prices for raw materials — in the following order — are: Plastics & Rubber Products; Fabricated Metal Products; Primary Metals; Machinery; Miscellaneous Manufacturing; Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products; and Nonmetallic Mineral Products. The six industries reporting paying decreased prices for raw materials in November — in the following order — are: Textile Mills; Furniture & Related Products; Petroleum & Coal Products; Chemical Products; Computer & Electronic Products; and Transportation Equipment.

Prices

%Higher

%Same

%Lower

Net

Index

Nov 2023

16.0

67.7

16.3

-0.3

49.9

Oct 2023

11.0

68.1

20.9

-9.9

PR Newswire Association LLC.
By: PR Newswire Association LLC. - 01 Dec 2023
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