In moving up to August’s current conditions reading of 58.3, NEMA’s Electroindustry Business Conditions Index (EBCI) has been at or above 50 for six consecutive months. This suggests that conditions continue to be conducive for expansion in the electrical manufacturing sector. A plurality of respondents, 50 percent, reported conditions unchanged from a month ago, whereas a clear majority of 64 percent responded similarly in July. Thirty-three percent of our panel reported better conditions in August, compared to only 21 percent who responded that way last month. Although the share of respondents reporting worse conditions remained low at 17 percent this month, the slight increase over 14 percent in July bears watching as we move forward.
The survey’s measure of the intensity of change in electroindustry business conditions remained unchanged from July, with the mean rating holding steady at +0.2. Panelists are asked to report intensity of change on a scale ranging from –5 (deteriorated significantly) through 0 (unchanged) to +5 (improved significantly).
The future conditions index surged from 57.1 in July to 66.7 this month. One-third of our panel members expect conditions to be unchanged in six months, down from 43 percent in July. The proportion of respondents expecting better conditions rose from 36 percent last month to 50 percent now, and 17 percent – versus 21 percent in July – now expect worsening conditions six months ahead.
Click here for the complete August 2016 report.