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Industry Confidence Continues Decline, Survey Finds
The Electroindustry Business Confidence Index (EBCI) for current North American conditions declined to 39.6 from 44 in October, the fourth consecutive month in which the diffusion-style index failed to reach the 50-point threshold indicative of industry expansion, NEMA says.
Meanwhile, the EBCI for future North American conditions, a measure of executives’ expectations for conditions six months ahead, dipped to 33.3 from 35.4 last month.
The decline is partially explained by the ongoing unwinding of a heretofore record breaking U.S. housing market, one of the critical end-markets for electrical equipment, has clearly taken a toll on industry sentiment in the past several months, according to NEMA.
At the same time, the business landscape is not totally gloomy. Panelists noted strength in both nonresidential construction and power equipment markets. Moreover, most of the manufacturing sector remains healthy, although growth has moderated from the very rapid rates seen earlier this year.
The EBCI gauges the business confidence of the electroindustry in Asia, Europe, North America, and Latin America, and is based on the results of a monthly survey of senior managers at NEMA member companies. Those companies represent more than 80 percent of the electroindustry.