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Machinery market stumbles on over-the-top forecast

Posted: 14 Apr 2014 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:IHS? industrial machinery? Italy? France?

IHS Technology saw a positive global industrial machinery market outlook, buoyed up by higher demand for cars and rising R&D market spending in robotics, and semiconductor equipment, among others. (See: Industrial machinery market growth to double in 2014) However, actual market reports that have been recently released in Malaysia, Italy, France, and Finland suggest an overzealous forecast by IHS.

IHS Technology predicts that the industrial machinery market will grow substantially over the next five years, and double its growth this year alone. The company's recent report cites global improvement in economic conditions in such segments as machine tools, agriculture, packaging, and materials handling as the basis of its forecast.

IHS expects this demand to move revenues to $1.6 trillion in 2014, from $1.5 trillion in 2013 for a growth rate of 6.3 per cent for the year, more than the 2.9 per cent increase in 2013.

Specifically, the demand for industrial machines is supported by a higher demand for cars worldwide, automotive tools and robotics, and rubber and plastics. The research firm further expects the rising spending for technology will filter down to robotics, semiconductor equipment, mining, and oil and gas machinery. IHS also cites that China has worked through its overcapacity and will again experience growth over the next several years. While the Americas and Asia are doing well, Europe increased machinery production output last year by a mere 1.1 per cent.

Maybe the increase won't be a global thing, as industrial output figures were announced within the past 24 hours in Italy, France, Finland, and Malaysia. Only Malaysia is showing healthy growth in industrial production, reporting a growth rate of 6.7 per cent vs. the 6.3 per cent forecast. Italy's industrial production in February reversed gains seen in January, output declining 0.5 per cent rather than the 0.2 per cent expectation. The country is banking on a revival in car production to pull it out of the doldrums.

France's industrial production rose 0.1 per cent in February from January instead of the 0.2 per cent expectation. Finland indicates that a slump in the electrical and electronics segments is behind its industrial production malaise. In this segment output is down 10.9 per cent, and declines are also seen in the metal industry, chemical industry, mining and quarrying, and food and forest industries. Industrial production was up by a hair in February after falling 3.4 per cent in January.

It seems that, maybe, IHS's machinery forecast might be a bit overzealous.

- Carolyn Mathas
??EE Times

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