March Cutting Tool Orders Highest Since April 2015

But, the rate of growth has started to slow in recent months.

In March 2018, real cutting tool orders were $207.1 million, which was their highest level since April 2015 . March’s orders increased 2.1 percent compared with one year ago. That was the second slowest rate of growth in the last 12 months. However, this was the 11th consecutive month of growth. The annual rate of growth decelerated slightly to 7.0 percent.

In April, the GBI: Metalworking index was unchanged at 59.5. While 2017 was a record setting year for the index, 2018 has seen the index climb even higher. The index leads cutting tool orders by about six months. Therefore, as the chart below shows, the index is indicating that, on its current trajectory, the annual growth rate in cutting tool orders is likely at or very near its peak rate of growth.

Reports

World Machine Tool Survey

An independent annual survey that collects statistics from machine tool consuming and producing countries and compares them in real U.S. dollars.

Gardner Business Index

A diffusion index measuring month-to-month changes in activity at durable goods and discrete parts manufacturing facilities.

Capital Spending Survey

An annual survey that collects statistics regarding budgeted spending on machine tools, testing equipment, software and more that are then projected across the metalworking industry based on plant size.