Manufacturers still satisfied with level of orders received

by Canadian Shipper

Canadian manufacturers remain satisfied with the level of order received but there is growing concern with the backlog of unfilled orders, Statistics Canada’s latest Business Conditions Survey indicates.

In January, 82% of manufacturers indicated that orders received were about right or increasing, the Survey released this morning indicates.

The voluntary survey, to which almost 4,000 manufacturers responded, requests opinions on production impediments, finished product inventory levels, new and unfilled order levels, and production and employment prospects in the coming three months.

With 21% of manufacturers indicating increasing levels of orders received and 18% stating lower levels of orders received, the balance of opinion stood at +3, down 6 points from October.

The balance of opinion is determined by subtracting the proportion of manufacturers that stated production would decrease in the coming three months from the proportion who stated production would be increasing.

However, the Survey also reported that about 20% of manufacturers indicate that the level of unfilled orders was lower than normal and 8% reported higher-than-normal levels. The resulting balance of opinion lost 2 points from October to -12. Nevertheless, the proportion of manufacturers indicating that the current level of unfilled orders was higher than normal or about right stood at a respectable 80% in January.

Producers in the primary metals and fabricated metal product and machinery manufacturing industries were the major contributors to the decreased balance.

According to the Monthly Survey of Manufacturing, unfilled orders in November stood at $46.9 billion, down 2.1% from November 2001.

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