MAPI — Manufacturers Alliance News and Reports — Virtual Reality in the Future of Manufacturing and More

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

MAPI

Issues in the Brief

Infographic: A New Model for Manufacturing’s Multiplier Effect
While traditional measurement methods suggest that manufacturing is responsible for only 11% of U.S. GDP, my recent research reveals this is not the case.

Virtual Reality and the Future of Manufacturing
Virtual reality has many applications beyond video games, particularly for manufacturing. Companies are leveraging this technology for product development, prototypes, training and factory floor layout. Ford and BAE Systems already have reputations for using virtual reality to shorten product design cycles and save costs.

Europe’s Growth Perks Up
A flash GDP estimate showed the growth rate nearly doubling in the Eurozone to an annualized pace of over 2.5% in the first quarter. This compares to the equivalent U.S. rate of 0.5%. Europe is regaining its footing after two recessions.

Waldman on Jobs
Weakening labor supply, human capital supply and labor productivity are contributing to a murky economic outlook. The deteriorating productivity picture is particularly cause for alarm. Manufacturing employment grew by only 4,000 jobs in April, with most coming from the motor vehicles industry.

 

Economic Update

Productivity Dynamics in U.S. Manufacturing
Productivity growth in the computer and electronic products subsector, once the principal driver of productivity performance in the manufacturing sector, has experienced significant waning in recent years. Consequently, the U.S. manufacturing productivity outlook has become murky. This is a challenging trend for our society, because increased productivity growth helps lift living standards. The good news is that empirical evidence put forth in this paper shows that innovation and capital investment play a key role in accelerating multifactor productivity growth (i.e., output per unit of a combined set of inputs including labor, materials, and capital) in a wide range of manufacturing industries.

Time to Restore a Balanced, Rules-Based Multilateral Trading System
The rules-based multilateral trade and financial system created at Bretton Woods in 1944 has been crumbling over the past decade. The WTO trading system to reduce trade barriers on a reciprocal, most-favored-nation basis has been replaced by a spreading network of bilateral and regional preferential trade agreements. And far more threatening, the IMF financial system, centered on convertible, non-manipulated exchange rates, has been undermined by rampant exchange rate mercantilism, principally by China and other Asian nations.

Economic Update [Video] : Productivity Dynamics in U.S. Manufacturing
In this seven-minute video, Cliff describes his analysis of US manufacturing productivity growth, reveals industry rankings for labor productivity growth and discusses how industries’ interconnected performance can inform policy efforts to stimulate growth.

Quarterly Forecast for U.S. Economic and Manufacturing Growth
Slides from Chief Economist Dan Meckstroth’s discussion of the overall outlook for the U.S. economy, with particular emphasis on the manufacturing sector, for 2016 and 2017.

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