The 2020 Mid-Year Economic Update_long

Day: March 5, 2008

MDM Survey: Concern High Over Economy

More than 50% of MDM readers in a recent MDM survey are concerned" about the state of the economy, and 27% say they are "very concerned."

About 45% expect the economy to grow worse over the next six months. About the same number expect the economy to stay the same.
 
These results are part of the MDM Reader Survey on the Economy, conducted online in the last two weeks of February.
 
Overall, results were mixed and, it seems, dependent on customer segment. The two most cited segments in which respondents are seeing slowdowns, unsurprisingly, were building materials/construction and automotive.

Others mentioned slowdowns in any market tied to residential construction, including electrical, HVAC, appliances, plumbing, flooring, and ...

Recession a ‘Self-Fulfilling Prophecy’?

Could a recession in the U.S. be a self-fulfilling prophecy," as some in MDM's recent Reader Survey on the Economy contended? Some in the survey blamed the media, saying talk of a recession was overblown; one said: "Talk like this feeds on itself."
 
Some other comments indicated belief that consumer confidence and business spending is heavily influenced by media reports, and that customers have become "afraid" to spend money.
 
How do you view the role of the media in economic slowdowns? What are you seeing in your business?
 
Comment below in the box under "Write Your ...

Foodservice Distributor IJ Company to Consolidate Operations

Foodservice distributor IJ Company, Knoxville, TN, announced it will consolidate its Tallahassee division into its IJ Valdosta facility.
 
Over the last several years the IJ Tallahassee Division has continued to grow and now requires additional warehouse space," the company said in a release.
 
The change will allow the Southern Region, which includes IJ Tallahassee, IJ Valdosta and IJ Atlanta to continue its growth. "We are thrilled to have the opportunity to dramatically expand the available product offering to IJ's customers and enhance its competitive offering through realizing the synergies that a larger facility can achieve," said Barry Houghtalen, Senior Vice President, IJ Company Southern Region. 
 
The target date for this consolidation is ...

DXP Enterprises Sales Double in 2007

DXP Enterprises, Inc. reported sales increased 58.9% to $444.5 million for 2007, thanks to its acquisition of Precision Industries earlier in the year. Profit was $17.3 million, up from $11.9 million in 2006.
 
In the fourth quarter, profit was $5.7 million, compared with profit of $3.5 million in 2006. Sales in the fourth quarter were up 113% to $168.8 million, again thanks to the acquisition of Precision.
 
DXP Enterprises distributes pumps, bearings, power transmission, seals, hose, safety, fluid power, electrical and industrial supplies. The distributor also has an integrated supply program, Smart ...

U.S. Foodservice Changes Structure in PA

U.S. Foodservice, Rosemont, IL, has announced plans to transition its multi-unit business currently serviced from Altoona, PA, to other U.S. Foodservice locations to improve efficiency in its operations.
 
Under the new structure, service currently provided by the Altoona Division to national multi-unit restaurants will move to other U.S. Foodservice locations. The change will reduce the miles driven to serve these customers, according to a press release, and reduce fuel consumption and time it takes to drive.
 
The change reduces U.S. Foodservice's workforce at the Altoona Division by 20% of the 450 employees.
 
U.S. Foodservice is a national broadline distributor with more than 70 locations worldwide. The company distributes food and related products to ...

Harbour Group Acquires Top Knobs

Top Knobs USA, provider of fine decorative hardware for the kitchen and bath industry, was acquired by Harbour Group.

Top Knobs, Hillsborough, NJ, provides pulls, handles and knobs to a broad customer base of home owners, contractors, architects, and designers. Top Knobs offers over 2,600 products in 17 different collections through independent kitchen, bath, and decorative hardware dealers as well as through cabinet manufacturers and distributors nationwide.

Jeff Fox, Harbour Group's CEO, said: We see interesting similarities between Top Knobs and our previous investments in the home décor market. Our strategy will be to invest in a variety of organic growth initiatives, while aggressively seeking to acquire complementary businesses. Although many people ...

BAE Systems Divests Flight Systems Business

BAE Systems, Rockville, MD, has agreed to sell its Flight Systems business, Mojave, CA, to Calspan Corporation.

The cash purchase price is $62.5 million plus an additional consideration to be paid pursuant to an earn-out mechanism by reference to the revenues of the business over the next five years.

Flight Systems, with 170 employees, performs aircraft modification, aircraft operations, flight tests, and aerial full-scale targets production for military and commercial customers.

This sale is consistent with our strategy to expand BAE Systems'role as a developer and integrator of systems and de-emphasize our role as a subsystems and services provider,"said Mike Heffron, president of BAE Systems'Electronics &Integrated Solutions operating group, which ...