Good morning and welcome to this week’s Friday Brief.
With MACH 2020 only six weeks away, the preparations are in full swing here at the MTA. Although Coronavirus COVID-19 continues to cause concern around the world, the UK Government advises that the risk to individuals in the UK is low. At the NEC, the venue for MACH 2020, events are carrying on as scheduled.
MACH 2020 is a national trade show and the vast majority of exhibitors and visitors are based in the UK. We are monitoring the situation carefully and are working with our partners, including the NEC, to consider if any additional measures should be implemented, in which case we will advise our exhibitors and visitors accordingly.
Staying with this story our HR partners Croner have produced a helpful Q&A on what precautions employers should take with the current cases of Coronavirus. We also have links in the story to Make UK’s advice for manufacturers and the current information from the Government.
On 25th March the Institute for Manufacturing (IfM), University of Cambridge will be hosting an event on manufacturing sustainability: practical steps towards an efficient future. Full details on what you can expect from the event and how to register can be found within the Brief.
Cloud data solutions being trialled at the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (AMRC) could provide a secure and cost-effective way for small and medium sized manufacturers to explore how machine learning and Industry 4.0 technologies can boost their productivity. Find out more within the Brief.
The European Cutting Tool Association (ECTA) has announce the dates for its annual conference. This will take place from Thursday 25th to Saturday 27th June and be held in the French city of Bordeaux. Details of the programme and how to book can be found in the story below.
On March 26th In partnership with ALFED, the Aluminium Federation, KYOCERA SGS EU are hosting a Lunch & Learn event for their customers and associates. If you would like to attend details of how to do so and the full agenda for the event can be found below.
As always, we would encourage all members to take part in the MTA Business Survey, but this month’s is especially important as we have included a question about the impact so far of the Coronavirus – please take a minute or two to respond, even if it is only to that question.
On the whole, the Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) data for manufacturing that came out at the start of the week were not too bad - with one notable exception! The UK managed its first positive figure since last April, most of the Euro-zone improved (although remaining below 50 overall), other parts of Europe saw better figures and the Americas were mostly better than in January. However, there was a dramatic fall in the PMI for China and the rest of East Asia was also lower than in January, with the exception of the ASEAN block which managed a small improvement (possibly from a substitution effect). These trends are at least partly a matter of timing and we can expect to see more decelerations next month as the supply chains propagate the problems that have, until the end of February, largely been confined to China. You can download the updated version of our monthly chart report on the PMI data from the story below.
The only other piece of economic news this week was the data on the cutting tool market in the USA to complement the manufacturing technology data we reported last week. The survey run jointly by USCTI and AMT reports that cutting tool demand fall by -1% last year (compared to 2018) but points to a recovery in 2020 once the one-off issues currently affecting the market have eased. We also have the latest data-set for the contract price adjustment service that we offer for members who have long-term supply contracts.
That’s all for this week, we’ll be back next Friday, have a great weekend from everyone at the MTA.