Manufacturing expanded in February following a decline in January, and the overall economy grew for the 64th consecutive month, according to the latest Manufacturing ISM Report on Business.
February proved to be a good month in the manufacturing sector as New Orders, Production and Employment contributed to a solid growth scenario, ISM reports. The Inventories Index showed significant reduction in manufacturers' inventories for the second consecutive month, and the Backlog of Orders Index is growing once again.
While the prices manufacturers pay reached their highest level in five months, concern about prices is still minimal due to the small number of commodities indicated as up in price. The trend in manufacturing, as well as the overall economy, ...
Grainger, distributor of facilities maintenance supplies, has released a new specialty catalog for plumbing products and supplies.  ; Products offered through  ; the catalog include water heaters and coolers, pipes, valves, fittings, fixtures, faucets and water filtration systems.   ; The catalog is 316 pages, with more than 16,000 Plumbing, Valves and Fittings, or which 12,000 are new to Grainger's offering. An additional 1,500 products that are related to Plumbing (from various categories) brings the total to about 17,750 items.  ;
; Grainger also bolstered its offering in material handling, fasteners and security products this year.   ; W.W. Grainger, Inc., with ...
Home Depot CEO Frank Blake reinforced his drive to refocus on the business' retail division at the company's annual investor and analyst conference. To that end, Blake told participants that acquisitions outside of the retail core won't be a priority for us.   ; HD Supply ended the year at 12% of Home Depot's overall sales - HD hopes that number will grow to 15% by the end of the year. Still HD Supply, which reached $12 billion in sales in 2006, had a 6.9% decline in organic growth in the fourth quarter. That is consistent with the down housing market.   ; Retail also suffered in the fourth quarter 2006 with a profit drop of 28%. Sales were up just 4%. For the year, organic growth was down 2.8%.   ; HD does not expect ...
Barnes Group Inc., Bristol, CT, has acquired the assets of the Di-Dro Manifold Systems product line from Di-Dro Systems Inc. The Di-Dro Manifold System product line will be integrated into Barnes Group Inc.'s Associated Spring business segment.
The Di-Dro Manifold System product line is complementary to Associated Spring's Nitrogen Gas Spring Manifold System product line. The addition of the Di-Dro Manifold System product line expands the company's reach in high-quality gas springs for use in diverse industrial applications requiring high force and/or compact dimensions. Applications range from tool and die manufacturers, to industrial robots, to dump trucks to waste compressors around the world.
SKF has agreed to acquire ABBA Linear Tech Co., Ltd., an Asian manufacturer of profile rail guides, based in Taiwan.   ; The ABBA Group has annual sales of about MSEK 250. It is headquartered in Taipei, Taiwan and has facilities in Taiwan and in China.   ; With the addition of ABBA's product range, SKF is reinforcing its position in linear guides. The acquisition is in line with the SKF Group's strategy to strengthen its different technology platforms and to grow in Asia.   ; ABBA will be part of the SKF Actuation & Motion Control business unit within the Industrial Division.   ; More Breaking News European ...
HD Supply White Cap Construction Supply, a business of HD Supply, has agreed to acquire GSI General Materials LLC, a distributor of concrete accessories, forming systems and fabricated rebar.   ; GSI operates two North Carolina facilities and two South Carolina locations, and employs 72.   ; HD Supply White Cap Construction Supply is the construction supply business unit within The Home Depot's HD Supply Division, a distributor of specialty hardware, tools and materials targeting construction contractors.   ; With the addition of GSI General Materials, HD Supply White Cap Construction Supply will operate 160 branches in 27 states.
New Orders New orders for manufactured durable goods in January decreased $17.1 billion or 7.8
percent to $203.9 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced in a preliminary release. This followed two consecutive monthly
increases including a 2.8 percent December increase. Excluding transportation, new orders decreased 3.1 percent. Excluding
defense, new orders decreased 7.8 percent. Shipments Shipments of manufactured durable goods in
January, up five of the last six months, increased $0.5 billion or 0.2 percent to $211.4 billion. This followed a 0.5 percent
December increase. Unfilled Orders Unfilled orders for manufactured durable goods in January,
up twenty of the last twenty-one months, increased $1.0 ...
Stockholm, Sweden-based AxIndustries has acquired AB Sverull, a distributor of bearings, transmissions and seals, also based in Sweden.
Sverull has annual sales of SEK 125 million with more than 45 employees  ; at offices in five cities.
After the acquisition, AxIndustries will have annual sales of more than SEK 600 million in bearings, transmissions and seals. It has mroe than SEK 1.1 billion in sales overall. AxIndustries is a part of Axel Johnson International.
Sverull will continue to be run as an independent company in AxIndustries.
Higher electricity and energy prices, as well as metals prices, have led Airgas, Inc., Radnor, PA, to increase prices on packaged and bulk gases, and other products.   ; We are facing rising costs, even though the escalation of the past year has moderated, said Airgas Chairman and CEO Peter McCausland.   ; Prices will increase, on average:
10%-15% for packaged and bulk industrial gases, including oxygen, nitrogen, and argon; acetylene and other fuel gases; specialty gases; process chemicals and rare gases; medical gases; nitrous oxide, carbon dioxide, hydrogen, and dry ice;
15%-25% for helium
Effective immediately, Airgas also will raise rental rates for cylinders and bulk tanks ...
USG Corp, Chicago, IL, announced its specialty distribution subsidiary, L & W Supply, will acquire California Wholesale Material Supply Inc. for $280 million.   ; California Wholesale Material Supply is a distributor of building materials with annual sales of $600 million. It has 30 locations in seven Western states and Mexico and nearly 900 employees.   ; The acquisition is expected to help USG enhance L & W's reach on the West Coast and in the Southwest.   ; L & W Supply contributes about $2.5 billion to USG's annual sales.   ; USG also announced it would build a new plant in northern California to manufacture about 1 billion square feet of SHEETROCK ...