Today, the Institute for Supply Management released their latest Report on Business for the manufacturing sector indicating that economic activity continued to weaken in October with assessments of many measures slowing.
At 50.8 the purchasing manager’s composite index (PMI) declined 1.55% since September sliding 10.72% below the level seen a year earlier.
Some respondents indicated sluggish domestic sales, uncertain prices, slowing trends and headwinds coming from customers unwillingness to commit to purchases:
"Starting to see some deflation on raw materials." (Chemical Products)
"Overall industry volumes remain flat vs. previous month. Uncertainty in supply chain is increasing due to lower volumes vs. historical." (Electrical Equipment, Appliances & Components)
"International: contraction in demand for our products is driving mitigation of excess material on order. Contract manufacturers are adjusting their resources accordingly." (Machinery)
"Business is slowing — not crashing — but uncertainty and caution is the order of the day." (Plastics & Rubber Products)
"Retail branded business is slower than expected due to consumers continuing to move to private label- and store-brand products for price advantage. Raw material supplies are in good shape, but prices are staying stubbornly higher than expected." (Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products)