The 2020 Mid-Year Economic Update_long

Day: October 25, 2008

Credit Crunch in the Channel

Credit has been virtually frozen since unprecedented turmoil hit Wall Street and major banks this month. Here's what it means for distributors, manufacturers and deal-making.


The construction industry has been hit hard by the severe downturn in the housing market and the 160 member companies that make up the AMAROK Drywall Distributor Network are no exception. While a number of distributors are holding their own, others have seen business fall off so much that they have struggled to cover overhead.

Strike two: When builders started to file for bankruptcy and were unable to pay their subcontractors, the distributors'receivables fell off dramatically. Receivables have improved, but the distributors are now facing a third strike: the ...

Commentary: Beware the Sound Bites

Alan Greenspan has gone from irrational exuberance in his description of the stock market boom of the 1990s to a once-in-a-century"credit tsunami in 2008. The subject lines of my Wall Street Journal news alerts daily look increasingly like tabloid magazine headlines -"Dow Plunges!"But as we are seeing, wait a day and the news is reversed.
Sometimes a wake-up call is healthy; panic never is. Anyone who experienced the media's lack of understanding and coverage of the last recession at the beginning of this decade have a large and healthy degree of skepticism about what we see on TV and read in newspapers about the current crisis. But the reality gap is at its greatest right now. Fear and speculation are driving sound bites about how bad it might get.
As the lead ...

State of the Distribution Software Industry, Part 3: The Growing Role of the Internet

This is part of a series looking at the distribution software industry. This article examines the role the Internet is playing in driving change in the way distributors do business.


In the last decade, the Internet has been one of the key drivers of technology development.
The Internet is the backbone today for anybody that's in distribution, anybody in the supply chain and supply chain execution,"Rod Winger, Epicor's director of product marketing. "You could not do what we do today without the Internet."
The emphasis on having information available anytime from anywhere has been a driving force behind many companies'moving into the realm of e-commerce, doing business with suppliers and ...

Pricing Software Grows in Distribution

This article looks at the growing market for pricing software in distribution.

For many distributors, managing inventory through software was a significant shift in how they viewed the strategic use of technology. Next up: Pricing.

Thanks to economic uncertainty and volatile costs, pricing is top of mind for many distributors right now as a strategy to preserve and expand gross margin. "The way I think of it is this: In the old days, distributors learned how to manage their inventory using computer systems," says Tim Reynolds, president of Tribute Inc., a software provider to fluid power and hose distributors that also provides a pricing function. "If you have 20,000 SKUs, you can't do it in ...

MDM News Digest 3820

Wolseley plc, UK-based distributor of plumbing and heating products and building materials, reported it would not sell Stock Building Supply but instead extensively restructure the U.S. building materials distributor. More
84 Lumber has announced 20 more store closings, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. The building materials distributors closed nine stores a few weeks ago. The company now has 335 stores, down from 400. More
Cummins-Wagner Co., Inc., Annapolis Junction, MD, a distributor of industrial process equipment and HVAC equipment in the Mid-Atlantic region, has acquired Rochester, NY-based Siewert ...

Monthly Wholesale Trade: August 2008

August 2008 sales of merchant wholesalers, except manufacturers'sales branches and offices, after adjustment for seasonal variations and trading-day differences but not for price changes, were $404.9 billion, down 1.0 percent from July, but up 13.4 percent from August 2007, the U.S. Census Bureau reported. The July preliminary estimate was revised downward $1.7 billion or 0.4 percent. August sales of durable goods were down 1.5 percent from last month, but were up 5.5 percent from a year ago. Compared to last month, sales of hardware, and plumbing and heating equipment and supplies were down 6.5 percent and sales of lumber and other construction materials were down 5.2 percent. Sales of nondurable goods were down 0.6 percent from last month, but were up 20.7 percent from last year. Sales ...

U.S. Market Analysis: Bearings MRO

The industrial product group listed here - Bearings MRO - represented a market in 2007 of $4.1 billion, according to estimates by Industrial Market Information, Minneapolis. These charts show the top ten industries, by SIC code, consuming these products; and the 2007 end-user consumption of these groups sorted by the nine government market ...

MDM October 25, 2008

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