April U.S. manufacturing technology consumption totaled $222.36 million, according to McLean, Va.-based Association for Manufacturing Technology (AMT) and Rockville, Md.-based American Machine Tool Distributors’ Association (AMTDA). This total, as reported by companies participating in the organizations' joint U.S. manufacturing technology consumption (USMTC) program, was down 15.6% from March but up 102.7% from the total of $109.69 million reported for April 2009. With a year-to-date total of $783.03 million, 2010 is up 50.6% compared with 2009.

"Cautious spending on manufacturing technology in January and February pushed higher levels of investment into the later part of the first quarter, propping up March results," says Douglas K. Woods, AMT president. "While April dipped slightly as compared to March, the level of activity was more than 100% better than a year ago. We expect this investment level to be more typical as the year progresses, reflecting manufacturers' continued cautious optimism."

The USMTC report, jointly compiled by the two trade associations representing the production and distribution of manufacturing technology, provides regional and national U.S. consumption data of domestic and imported machine tools and related equipment. Analysis of manufacturing technology consumption provides a reliable leading economic indicator as manufacturing industries invest in capital metalworking equipment to increase capacity and improve productivity.

The U.S. manufacturing technology consumption is also reported on a regional basis for five geographic breakdowns of the United States:

  • Northeast Region: With a total of $33.90 million, Northeast Region manufacturing technology consumption in April was 6.3% less than March's $36.18 million but 39.8% more than last April’s total. The year-to-date total of $122.90 million was 19.7% above the comparable figure in 2009.
  • Southern Region: April manufacturing technology consumption in the Southern Region stood at $28.68 million, down 36.0% when compared with the $44.80 million total for March but up 109.1% when compared with April a year ago. The $122.05 million year-to-date total was 76.7% higher than the total for the same period in 2009.
  • Midwest Region: At $57.97 million, April manufacturing technology consumption in the Midwest Region was down 26.7% from March's $79.08 million but up 82.2% when compared with April a year ago. The $217.40 million year-to-date total was 41.7% more than the 2009 total at the same time.
  • Central Region: Totaling $73.20 million, Central Region manufacturing technology consumption in April rose 8.2% when compared with March’s $67.65 million and was 185.6% above the total for last April. At $221.36 million, 2010 year-to-date was 73.2% higher than the comparable figure a year ago.
  • Western Region: Western Region manufacturing technology consumption in April totaled $28.62 million, a drop of 19.9% when compared with the $35.74 million tallied in March but up 100.4% when compared with April 2009. With a year-to-date total of $99.32 million, 2010 was up 48.2% when compared with 2009 at the same time.