Manufacturing by the Numbers

Manufacturing by the Numbers: April 2024

May 1, 2024
Plus, manufacturing activity expanded in March after contracting for 16 consecutive months.

The old adage ‘you can't manage what you can't measure’ has never been truer, especially in the industrial sector. Having the right data about your plant, your business, and the industry in general is essential if you want your company to thrive.

This monthly roundup highlights the reports, studies, surveys, and insights that are impacting the manufacturing industry. Here are this month’s stats.

Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in March after contracting for 16 consecutive months

"The Manufacturing PMI registered 50.3% in March, up 2.5 percentage points from the 47.8% recorded in February. The overall economy continued in expansion for the 47th month after one month of contraction in April 2020."

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The Fifth Federal Reserve District's manufacturing activity remained slow in April

"The composite manufacturing index increased from −11 in March to −7 in April. Of its three component indexes, shipments increased from −14 to −10, new orders increased from −17 to −9, and employment fell from 0 to −2."

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Orders of manufacturing technology totaled $343.3 million in February

"This was a 2.1% increase from January 2024 but a 26.5% decline from February 2023. Year-to-date orders reached $679.6 million, a decline of 16.9% from the first two months of 2023."

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Texas' manufacturing production index rose from -4.1 to 4.8 in April

"Other measures of manufacturing activity were mixed this month. The new orders index remained negative, though it pushed up seven points to -5.3. The capacity utilization and shipments indexes turned positive this month, coming in at 4.2 and 5.0, respectively."

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U.S. cutting tool consumption totaled $214.6 million in February

"This total, as reported by companies participating in the Cutting Tool Market Report collaboration, was up 4.9% from January’s $204.5 million and up 9% when compared with the $196.9 million reported for February 2023."

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Philadelphia manufacturing index rose 12 points to 15.5 in April, its third consecutive positive reading

"Almost 38% of the firms reported increases in general activity this month, while 22% reported decreases; 40% reported no change."

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Industrial production rose 0.4% in March but declined at an annual rate of 1.8% in Q1

"This increase was boosted in part by a gain of 3.1% in motor vehicles and parts; factory output excluding motor vehicles and parts moved up 0.3%."

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The Empire State manufacturing index rose 7 points in April but remained below zero at -14.3

"New orders and shipments both declined significantly, and unfilled orders continued to shrink."

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Manufacturing activity in the Tenth Federal Reserve District was down in April

"The month-over-month composite index was -8 in April, down from -7 in March and -4 in February. The composite index is an average of the production, new orders, employment, supplier delivery time, and raw materials inventory indexes."

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About the Author

Alexis Gajewski | Senior Content Strategist

Alexis Gajewski has over 15 years of experience in the maintenance, reliability, operations, and manufacturing space. She joined Plant Services in 2008 and works to bring readers the news, insight, and information they need to make the right decisions for their plants. Alexis also authors “The Lighter Side of Manufacturing,” a blog that highlights the fun and innovative advances in the industrial sector. 

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