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AMT Report: Orders Down but Still Above Historical Averages

November 13, 2023

New orders of manufacturing technology in September declined 2.8 percent from August 2023, and by 23.4 percent year over year, according to the latest U.S. Manufacturing Technology Orders Report published by AMT—The Association For Manufacturing Technology. Year-to-date orders clocked in at 13.8 percent lower than the first three quarters of 2022.

“Though 2023 orders are down, activity is still above long-term historical averages, indicating relative health overall,” says AMT president Douglas K. Woods. “We are still seeing strength in key industries, with contract machine shops, medical, and automotive continuing to invest heavily in manufacturing technology.”

Contract machine shops increased order value by nearly a third while units ordered grew by a much smaller degree. Similarly, manufacturers of medical supplies dramatically increased their overall spending. The automotive sector also continued to increase orders. Because of the longer production horizon as well as a sustained increase in demand for new vehicles, automotive manufacturers made capital spending investments despite labor challenges.

“The disparity in manufacturing-technology investment across industries indicates that not all are paring back capital spending at once,” adds Woods. “Industries spending healthily on manufacturing technology appear to be shifting expenditures toward highly automated machinery, as evidenced by rising per-unit values.” 

Though year-to-date orders have declined compared to a strong 2022, order levels are above historical averages and there are pockets of strength in several industries.

“Industries supported by high consumer demand and benefiting from long production timelines continued to be reliable customers of manufacturing technology,” concludes Woods. “We detect a shift in capital-goods investment toward improving productivity through adoption of manufacturing-technology automation.”


See also: Association for Manufacturing Technology

Technologies: Management


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