ASA Insights
Mar. 1, 2012

Local Value Building a Stronger Industry
American Supply Association
This past week, staff members from ASA and the ASA Education Foundation paired into teams and hit the road to visit both ASA members and member prospects throughout the South. Next week, ASA staff will be in the Northeast for WANE All-Industry Hospitality Receptions right outside Boston on March 7 and just outside Philadelphia on March 8. On Wednesday, April 4, Region 3 of the ASA is hosting a Spring Networking Reception event at the House of Blues in Dallas. MwDA and WANE will be hosting events in St. Louis and Baltimore respectively in June. ASA's remaining regions will be represented by events throughout the rest of the year. What does all of this mean? Local value is building a stronger industry! Make plans to attend one or more of these valuable regional events, and visit ASA's Industry Calendar for more details on upcoming happenings near you!More

Keystone XL Progresses — Should It Be This Complicated?
American Supply Association
This week, TransCanada, developers of the Keystone XL, gave our economy and many in the PVF industry a welcome jolt. They informed the Department of State that they intend to reapply for a cross-border permit to construct the northern portion. In addition, they also will move forward with their plans to develop the lower portion, connecting Cushing, Okla., to the Gulf Coast in order to address growing production in this region. The lower portion is still subject to state and local permitting, but because it does not cross an international border, it is not subject to a presidential permit.More

Beschloss: Energy Plan Called a Total Catastrophe
The Desert Sun
Celebrated, globally published and world-renowned energy expert Michael J. Economides accused the Obama administration of igniting a worldwide energy development civil war that, he believes, the U.S. leadership is destined to lose in confrontation with China.More

Report: Needed Water Supply Infrastructure Will Cost More Than $1 Trillion
AHN via Gant Daily
A new report has found that the cost of repairing and expanding drinking water infrastructure in the United States will exceed $1 trillion in the next 25 years. In addition, the groundbreaking study by the American Water Works Association found that expense likely will be met primarily through higher water bills and local fees. The cost of needs will double from around $13 billion a year now to roughly $30 billion (in 2010 dollars) per year by the 2040s. AWWA is an international nonprofit scientific and educational society that focuses on the improvement of drinking water quality and supply.More

Copper Slips From Two-Week High After Bernanke Speaks
Copper fell for the first time in four days on Wednesday and pulled back from a two-week high after a tempered view of the U.S. economy from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke led a wave of risk reduction across broader markets. Copper fell alongside other risk asset markets like gold, crude oil and the euro after Bernanke said the U.S. economy would have to strengthen to ensure that the unacceptably high jobless rate keeps dropping.More

Obama Makes a Play for Scalia
The Obama administration needs to win over at least one conservative Supreme Court justice to save its health care reform law, and it's pulling out the stops to get one. Administration lawyers have peppered their briefs with citations to opinions written by Anthony Kennedy and Antonin Scalia, they've seized on the arguments made by one of Scalia's most beloved former clerks, and their allies in legal circles have talked up how a decision upholding the Affordable Care Act would play into John Roberts's legacy as chief justice.More

MFGWatch Finds Dramatic Contraction of EU Manufacturing
Economic uncertainty in the EU is leading European manufacturers to scale-back operations, investment projections and optimism. In fact, recently released third quarter 2011 results of the MFGWatch Quarterly Survey of North American & EMEA Manufactures show the following.More

David Simchi-Levi: It's Time to Bring Manufacturing Back to US
Harvard Business Review
A growing number of executives of U.S.-based companies are repatriating their manufacturing capabilities — moving some production operations back from overseas. One such company is Ford, which announced last year that it will move jobs from China and Mexico back to the U.S. Another example is Caterpillar, which is investing $120 million in a new plant in Victoria, Texas, which will make excavator machines — including some models that had been made at a Caterpillar plant in Japan and exported to the U.S.More