Survey: Metalformers Optimistic. But Concerns Continue Over Lead TimesMarch 18, 2021
Metalforming companies are more optimistic for improved business conditions during the next three months but continue to report longer lead times for steel and other materials, according to the March 2021 Precision Metalforming Association (PMA) Business Conditions Report. Among the report’s findings: 50 percent of metalforming companies forecast an improvement in economic activity in the next three months, compared to 37 percent in February); 54 percent forecast an increase in orders in the next three months, up from 48 percent in February; and current average daily shipping levels rose in March, with 63 percent reporting an increase, up from 52 percent in February.
The March report also indicates, however, that lead times continue to increase. When asked about lead times compared to the previous three months, 60 percent of respondents say that they have increased, up from 54 percent in February.
“Metalforming manufacturers are seeing an uptick in business, but their ability to meet the demands of customers is threatened by severe and growing supply problems,” says PMA President David Klotz. “Lead times for steel, aluminum, copper, brass and other metals are steadily increasing, and prices continue to rise. PMA continues to call on the Biden Administration to terminate the Section 232 steel and aluminum tariffs, which no longer are needed and are one of the main causes for chaos in the market.”
See also: Precision Metalforming Association