Survey Gauges Manufacturer Outlook and Key Challenges
March 25, 2006
Forty-four percent of U.S. manufacturers expect manufacturing to trail the overall economy in 2006, according to the 2006 National Manufacturing Week survey of manufacturers.
On the brighter side, National Association of Manufacturers President John Engler said that more than half of the respondents expect to increase capital spending in 2006 and to increase employment, and that almost three-fourths of them now report they are exporting to other countries. "These are all positive signs," he said.
Engler said the biggest challenges are rising external costs associated with health care, materials and energy, which manufacturers are unable to transfer to product pricing. "External cost burdens are having the biggest impact on ...