Construction + Economy

North American Business Conditions Slipped in October, but Six-Month-Ahead Outlook Improved

Data from NEMA’s monthly survey on the electroindustry business environment showed a slight decline in business conditions in October, but an
improvement in expectations for future conditions.

The Electroindustry Business Confidence Index (EBCI) for current North American business conditions fell to 48 from 53.6 in September. A reading above 50 indicates more panelists than not reported conditions improved during the month, while a reading below 50 indicates more panelists than not reported conditions deteriorated.

Sixteen percent (16%) of panelists – 4 out of a total of 25 – reported better conditions in October, compared to September’s figure of 25%. Meanwhile, 20% – 5 out of 25 – reported worse conditions in the latest month, against 18% in September. The majority of panelists in both September and October reported conditions were unchanged.

Meanwhile, the EBCI for North American conditions six months in the future climbed for a second straight month. The index reached 68, up from 66.1 in September and 54 in August, and continues to indicate that more panelists than not expect the business environment to improve over the next six months. Forty-four (44%) of panelists expect to see better conditions by April 2011, compared to only 8% anticipating a weakening.

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