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Cutting Tool Consumption Reconfirms Manufacturing Boom

February demand rose to $190.12 million, up 8.7% year/year and 7.4% YTD

U.S. manufacturers’ consumption of cutting tools increased again in the latest report, up 3.5% from January to $190.12 million in February, reconfirming the high volume of domestic manufacturing production. The new total represents an 8.7% rise over the year-ago total for February 2017, and brings the year-to-date total for cutting tool consumption to 373.73 million, signaling a 7.4% rise versus the two-month total for 2017.

Sales of cutting tools are an indicator of current manufacturing activity, as such products represent “a primary consumable in the manufacturing process,” according to AMT – the Assn. for Manufacturing Technology and the U.S. Cutting Tool Institute, which present the monthly Cutting Tool Market Report.

USCTI/ATMCTMR Feb 2018 chart

The monthly Cutting Tool Market Report tracks the results of U.S. cutting-tool consumption, which are compared to durable-goods shipments as an index to overall manufacturing activity.

In their release, AMT and USCTI quoted Oxford Economics director of U.S. Industry Mark Killion, who noted, “Orders for cutting tools have benefitted in recent months from a faster rate of business investment spending, due to recent tax cuts and renewed strength in key markets such as metals, mining and machinery.”

The CTMR is based on the figures reported by participating companies, and represent the majority of the U.S. market for cutting tools.

“February cutting tool sales show that business continues to grow, gaining 3.5% over January, a very solid start to 2018,” stated Philip Kurtz, president of USCTI. “Year-over-year sales posted a 7.4 percent gain and it certainly looks like the trend will continue.

“News of tariffs and pressure on raw-material prices could have an effect, but with strong market momentum it is certainly not a given that much will change,” Kurtz forecast. “March may or may not bring winds of change, but it will for sure bring spring.”

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