The PMPA Business Trends Index for April 2014 fell 6 points from 129 to 123, up two points over April 2013 and 4 points over April 2012. Number of respondents for April is 79- participation is improving from our move to our new online system. The sales index for the first four months is a positive indicator for the year. Our industry has shown solid sales so far in 2014.
Sentiment for other indicators going forward has leveled off or fallen in April 2014.
Employment remained essentially the same as last month and that is positive: “In April 2014, ~91 % of respondents (68/75 companies) expect Employment prospects to increase or remain the same over next three months (20 respondents said increase; 48 said remain the same). Just 9.4% of respondents expect employment prospects to decline. “
While the ISM PMI showed an increase in April, the ISM “production index” also dropped in April: “The April PMI® registered 54.9 percent, an increase of 1.2 percentage points from March’s reading of 53.7 percent, indicating expansion in manufacturing for the 11th consecutive month. The New Orders Index registered 55.1 percent, equal to the reading in March, indicating growth in new orders for the 11th consecutive month. The Production Index registered 55.7 percent, slightly below the March reading of 55.9 percent.” –ISM PMI April 2014
It seems that both the PMPA Business Trends Index are showing the same thing, strong performance but softening outlook for the months ahead.