MAPI – Manufacturers Alliance Economic News and Reports

A weekly round-up of the MAPI resources available to NFPA members through NFPA’s membership in MAPI.

Issues in the Brief

Pot, Patents, Bribes, & Hacks: 4 Smokin’ Hot Legal Issues for 2015
Manufacturing is the No. 1 most cyberattacked industry. This creates substantial challenges for corporate lawyers, who also contend with disjointed marijuana laws, severe bribery penalties and shifts in patent law. Find out how companies are responding.

Cuba’s Moment
As Cuba begins to benefit from recent reforms and leverage a new relationship with the U.S., it will draw on pronounced strengths such as an educated and sizable population. One challenge is weak investment—a negative for industrial development.

Oil Demand: The Other Side of the Equation
The historical relationship between economic growth and oil consumption has changed in recent years. Even amid economic growth, consumption in the U.S. and European OECD countries is forecast to decline in the long term.

Africa Rising
Africa is experiencing much-improved economic growth, which is reducing extreme poverty—and the sources of growth appear to extend beyond raw materials. A broad industrialization strategy, including programs for stimulating inward investment, will help achieve sustainable expansion.

China’s Economic Slowdown Continues
People in China are in a celebratory mood as the country prepares for the Spring Festival, the most important nationwide holiday that begins next Wednesday.  However, there is nothing to celebrate about for the economic data released in the past few weeks.

Solid Showing on Jobs
Better late than never, but we can finally say “Happy New Year.” With the raft of global market jitters and disappointing data of recent weeks, it hardly seemed like it. But the jobs report for January shows that multiple world troubles are not yet impeding the labor market progress that the U.S. so very much needs.

U.S. Deficit in Manufactures Up by 14% in the Fourth Quarter
U.S. exports of manufactures in the fourth quarter, compared with 2013, were up by 4%, imports were up by 7%, and the deficit soared by $19 billion, or 14%. This equates to a net loss of about 130,000 American manufacturing jobs for the quarter.


Economic Update

Manufacturing Activity January 2015
Dan Meckstroth, MAPI Foundation vice president and chief economist, reviews the most recent manufacturing data on industrial activity. Indicators for industrial production, capacity utilization, orders for capital goods, and manufacturing employment paint a picture of positive but moderating growth of manufacturing activity.

MAPI Foundation Business Outlook January 2015
The Composite Business Outlook Index edged down slightly from 67 in October to 66 in January. The index remains well above 50, the dividing line between expansion and contraction, and thus points to continued expansion over the next three to six months.

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