August U.S. manufacturing technology consumption totaled $246.42 million, according to The Association For Manufacturing Technology (AMT) and the American Machine Tool Distributors’ Association (AMTDA). This total, as reported by companies participating in the USMTC program, was down 5.7 percent from July but up 88 percent when compared with the total of $131.06 million reported for August 2009. With a year-to-date total of $1.6 billion, 2010 is up 62.4 percent compared with 2009.

These numbers and all data in this report are based on the totals of actual data reported by companies participating in the USMTC program.

“Despite the normal summer slowdown, the first eight months of 2010 saw an order rate that was up 60 percent over the same time period in 2009,” said Douglas K. Woods, president of AMT.  “We expect orders to be strong through the remainder of the year due in part to Congress extending the bonus depreciation allowance, which will remain in effect through December.”

The United States Manufacturing Technology Consumption (USMTC) report, jointly compiled by the two trade associations representing the production and distribution of manufacturing technology, provides regional and national U.S. consumption data of domestic and imported machine tools and related equipment. Analysis of manufacturing technology consumption provides a reliable leading economic indicator as manufacturing industries invest in capital metalworking equipment to increase capacity and improve productivity.

U.S. manufacturing technology consumption is also reported on a regional basis.

Midwest Region
With a total of $82.59 million, August Midwest Region manufacturing technology consumption was down 12.2 percent when compared with July’s $94.02 million but up 133 percent when compared with August a year ago. At $509.21 million, 2010 year-to-date was 73.2 percent higher than the comparable figure a year ago.


Quinn signs $12 million investment package for Nippon Sharyo expansion

Gov. Pat Quinn has announced a $12 million state business investment package to Nippon Sharyo U.S.A., Inc., which will support $35 million in private investment, to establish a rail car manufacturing facility in Rochelle. The project will result in the creation of 250 new jobs and retention of 15 jobs, and will support Illinois’ growing rail industry.

“Our robust supply chain, well-trained workforce, and status as America’s transportation hub make Illinois an ideal place for Nippon Sharyo to locate its U.S. headquarters and a new manufacturing facility,” said Quinn. “This is a great example of how the state’s strategic investments are putting more people to work and helping Illinois companies expand.”

In Japan, Nippon Sharyo boasts the largest market share of high-speed rail rolling stock. This August, METRA awarded Nippon Sharyo the contract to build its next generation of rail cars. METRA will purchase 160 new rail cars over the next five years with $585 million provided through the Illinois Jobs Now! capital program.

Nippon will build a new 400,000 square-foot manufacturing facility and relocate its U.S. headquarters to Rochelle. This new facility will enable them to meet the Federal Railroad Administration’s “Made in America” requirements and compete for contracts to assemble high-speed rail cars as America builds its high-speed rail network.

The state’s business investment package, administered by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), will consist of Economic Development for a Growing Economy (EDGE) corporate income tax credits based on job creation, Employer Training Investment Program job training funds and a Community Development Assistance Program grant. The company will also benefit from being located in an Enterprise Zone.

In addition, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is investing $5 million through the Illinois Jobs Now! capital program to build a rail spur from the Burlington Northern Santa Fe main line to the new factory. The siding will open up 12,000 new acres for future development. An additional $2 million investment will come from IDOT’s Economic Development Program.

The Illinois manufacturing sector has added more than 10,000 jobs this year, which is the best growth rate in the Midwest. August marked the sixth straight month of growth in manufacturing jobs in Illinois.
   

Grainger Announces Acquisition of SafetyCertified

Grainger, a Lake Forest-based broad line distributor of facilities maintenance products, has acquired substantially all of the assets of SafetyCertified, Inc. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

“By integrating new service capabilities like SafetyCertified into our U.S. business, we will be able to offer solutions that we expect will help our customers maintain regulatory compliance, reduce accident and injury rates and decrease operating costs,” said Mike Pulick, president of Grainger’s U.S. business.

The SafetyCertified business is a safety and risk-management business that offers an online program to assist organizations in their efforts to comply with Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) regulations, with program features around OSHA analysis, compliance, training and research. Grainger will offer this fee-based online service to complement its extensive safety product line and focus on comprehensive safety solutions.


Manufacturers honor Congressman Johnson

Congressman Timothy Johnson (R-15th) will receive the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) Award for Manufacturing Legislative Excellence in recognition of his consistent support of manufacturers and their employees in the U.S. Those members of Congress who maintained a voting record of 70 percent or higher during the 111th Congress (2009-2010) will receive the Award. Congressman Johnson received a 78-percent key vote rating.

Recently, NAM released its “Manufacturing Strategy for Jobs and a Competitive America,” which lays out a comprehensive plan for supporting jobs and a manufacturing economy. NAM is asking all members of Congress to publicly endorse the Strategy. You can view the Strategy by visiting www.nam.org.


AMT calls for action to revitalize U.S. manufacturing

The Association For Manufacturing Technology (AMT) is calling for a comprehensive national strategy to revitalize manufacturing in the U.S. through cooperation and innovation. The Manufacturing Mandate, being brought forward by AMT, asks political leaders to establish a strategy of collaboration between government industry and academia.  

This federal strategy would incentivize innovation and research and development in new products and manufacturing technologies; assure the availability of capital; increase global competitiveness; minimize structural-cost burdens; enhance collaboration between government, academia and industry; and build a better educated and trained “smartforce.”

The Manufacturing Mandate principles are:

• Incentivize innovation and R&D in new products and manufacturing technologies by supporting reauthorization and full funding of the America COMPETES Act; improving the R&D tax credit and making it permanent; and funding and sustaining targeted growth technologies.

• Assure availability of capital by revising SBA and government lending requirements for manufacturers that consider economic conditions; using the expanded DPA Title III lending authority to provide credit to defense-critical manufacturers; and providing incentives to banks making and maintaining capital loans to qualified manufacturers.

• Improve global competitiveness by modernizing U.S. export control policy; strengthening intellectual property protection; and streamlining the business visa process with major trading partners.

• Minimize structural cost burdens through lower business taxes and avoidance of any new tax increases on U.S. manufacturers; avoidance of excessive regulations; and encouragement of investment in new equipment and retooled plants.

• Enhance collaboration between government, academia and industry by coordinating government support and utilization of the existing national network of Manufacturing Innovation Clusters; creating a standing Interagency Manufacturing Structure comprised of cabinet officials, industry leaders and academics; and supporting and sponsoring targeted technology challenges.

• Build a better educated and trained “smartforce” by developing a national manufacturing skills certification program, supporting grants, scholarships and/or incentives for Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) degrees; and using Manufacturing Extension Partnerships (MEPs) as centers of manufacturing excellence to train and support local manufacturers.

The full “Manufacturing Mandate: Unleashing a Dynamic Innovation Economy” is available at www.AMTonline.org. Printed copies are available by calling 703-893-2900.