Sometimes you wonder if North American metal manufacturers got the memo.
Europe is struggling with countries teetering on the brink of financial collapse. China is no longer seeing its GDP grow by double-digit percentage points. Other once-hot economies in the world, such as Brazil, have cooled considerably. Meanwhile in the U.S., unemployment remains above 8 percent, and economists fret that the federal government may be headed off a "fiscal cliff" at the end of the year, when automatic budget cuts take place and Bush-era tax cuts end.
So what happened as the International Manufacturing Technology Show 2012 opened in Chicago on Sept. 10? Show organizers announced that they were expecting its most well-attended show since 2002. (Preregistration alone stood at 86,000.) Simultaneously, AMT—The Association For Manufacturing Technology announced that U.S. manufacturing technology orders in July were up 5.4 percent overall compared with the same time in 2011. U.S. manufacturers continue to move forward no matter what craziness occurs around them. (more...)