A monthly round-up of the MAPI resources available to NFPA members through NFPA’s membership in MAPI.
Issues in the Brief
Between 2009 and 2014, international rankings for ease of doing business improved in only about a third of 29 European economies. This would justify the (cautious) concern about European business losing ground in competitiveness. The pro-business climate has decayed more in some countries than in others but the deteriorating trend is consistent across multiple rankings.
Increased oil production has led to calls for lifting the ban on oil exports, though some members of Congress are opposed to the idea. Exports, however, would encourage energy development and thus benefit the U.S. economy.
The federal budget process has become a farce, and the president’s FY15 proposal, like many before it, isn’t aimed at creating an actual working framework for a fiscal budget. Substantial changes to the process would likely require legislation.
Over 10 years, the stock of U.S. direct investment in Canada grew continuously, but the U.S. share of Canadian FDI decreased. Changes to Canada’s foreign investment regime may help sustain the upward trend of U.S. investment stock by making it relatively easier for private U.S. businesses to invest in our northern neighbor.
After more than 30 hearings, the creation of numerous subgroups, and a tax reform tour across the country, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) released his comprehensive tax reform plan in February. Under the Joint Committee on Taxation’s (JCT) conventional analysis, the proposal would raise about $3 billion in revenue over 10 years.
The European Council and the European Parliament have “fixed” the original proposal to establish a Single Resolution Mechanism (SRM). The original blueprint had been criticized as overly bureaucratic and layered with long chains of decision-making.
Russia and the United Kingdom are showing encouraging signs of improvement, while the promising growth in Japan from early last year is slowing. Major East Asian economies outside of China and Japan are experiencing moderate growth, but much will depend on China’s performance. India and other emerging markets are facing both weakness and instability. The emerging market turmoil of recent weeks does not yet rise to the level of global contagion, however.
The manufacturing outlook for 2014 and 2015 calls for about a percentage point acceleration in the growth rate each year. An overarching reason for the anticipated rebound is that factors that were dragging down growth were absorbed and will not get worse over the next two years.
The Federal Reserve’s index of manufacturing output jumped by a surprising 0.8% in February, largely offsetting its 0.9% decline in January. At February’s level of production, the manufacturing sector is 82% recovered from its recession low. Recent trends in key indicators suggest continued momentum in manufacturing activity.
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This holiday season, we are thankful for each of our members. All your staff at NFPA want to thank you for all of the efforts that you have put in to help grow the fluid power industry. We couldn’t fulfill our mission without your dedication and support. Enjoy this time off with your loved ones,…
Doug is the Application Engineering Supervisor for HAWE North America, a manufacturer of hydraulic power units, pumps, valves and cylinders. HAWE will be showcasing their water resistant hydraulics that help deliver power to speed boats at IFPE – the International Fluid Power Exposition — and we invited Doug into our forum to learn more about…