ASA Insights
March 31, 2011

Register Today: ASA Legislative Fly-In May 3-4
American Supply Association
A recent survey of the ASA membership indicated that more than 80 percent of respondents agreed that contacting members of Congress is an effective form of communication. In addition, more than 80 percent of respondents also believe that contacting a member of Congress regarding issues affecting our industry can help build a solid relationship. What better time to start building a relationship than right now? If you have not already registered for the ASA Legislative Fly-In, scheduled for May 3-4, please do so now as our meeting registration deadline is today, Thursday, March 31. Please click here now to access registration materials. See you in Washington in a few weeks!More

OPR: Early-Participation Deadline April 30
American Supply Association
Understanding financial ratios and the effect of this type of analysis could mean the difference between simply operating your business or excelling in your industry. ASA's Operating Performance Report represents the most complete, accurate and up-to-date comparative financial performance information available anywhere for the PHCP/PVF industry. This study is designed to serve as a customized, easy-to-understand, actionable tool for you to evaluate your company's operating results, identify profit leaks and measure employee productivity. Early-participation deadline is April 30. Click here for more details.More

New Year, New Congress — Old Battles Re-Emerge
American Supply Association
In case you missed it, ASA Director of Government Affairs Dan Hilton's article New Year, New Congress — Old Battles Re-Emerge was featured in the ASA News section of the March issue of Supply House Times. Click here to view the article.More

ASA Safety Committee Presents FREE Webinar on Machine Safeguarding
American Supply Association
ASA's Safety Committee presents a FREE webinar at 2 p.m. Central time Thursday, April 28, titled "Machine Safeguarding Basics." Injuries from employees coming in contact with operating machinery result in some of the most catastrophic and costly types of accidents. Additionally, machine guarding citations for unguarded machinery rank in OSHA's Top 10 year in and year out. This webinar will cover the basics of machine guarding and the regulatory requirements behind them. Dave Volker, senior safety consultant with Lovegreen Risk Management, will be conducting the presentation. Lovegreen is a machine safeguarding company whose customers include GE, Lockheed Martin, Honeywell and Emerson. Please click here for webinar registration details.More

House, Senate Inch Closer to Sending 1099 Repeal to Obama
American Supply Association
This week, the Senate continued its work on reauthorizing the Small Business Innovation Research Act. It was expected that they would take a series of votes on amendments related to repealing 1099. Unless Congress acts, beginning in 2012 the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will require every business to file IRS Form 1099 for every transaction above $600. According to the National Taxpayer Advocate, there is potential within the IRS that 40 million businesses could be impacted by this requirement.More

ASA Spring Forum May 23-24
American Supply Association
ASA's Young Executives Division will be hosting the annual ASA Spring Forum, to be held May 23-24 in Kohler, Wisc. Featured speaker for this interactive education program, CEO Strategist Rick Johnson, will be presenting "Strategic Leadership During Economic Recovery: Creating a Sense of Urgency." Rick has more than 30 years of executive management experience in the wholesale-distribution industry, and he knows exactly what it takes to create leaders within a company and maximize each sale to its fullest potential. Please be sure to reserve your overnight accommodations and register by April 19. For complete information, click here.More

US PVC Prices to Rise as Global Supply Tightens on Japan Earthquake
U.S. PVC export prices were expected to increase in April, driven by strong demand from Asia, as imports from Japan were anticipated to plummet in coming months due to plant outages derived from a massive earthquake. "Some U.S. producers have decided to postpone one more week the announcement of their April nominations. They are waiting to see what is the impact of Japan's PVC situation on the global markets before making any decision," one trader said. On March 4 an 8.9-magnitude earthquake hit the northeast coast of Japan. Three PVC plants, with a combined capacity of 818,000 mt/year and representing 41 percent of Japan's total PVC production, were shut as they were affected by the earthquake.More

Poll: Majority of Americans Concerned About Water Quality
More than half of Americans say they have concerns about the quality of their water as more people become educated about specific contaminants and take action in their homes. Those are two findings from an independent survey released at WQA Aquatech USA. The random sample survey, conducted by Applied Research-West Inc., offers a look into Americans' evolving attitude about their water, especially when compared to previous polls. "We are seeing people become more educated about water issues and finding ways to ensure water quality for their families," said Peter J. Censky, executive director of the Water Quality Association, a not-for-profit trade organization that commissioned the survey. Among the major findings are the following.More

Michael Schuman: Can China Compete With American Manufacturing?
No, the headline is not a mistake. I know we usually are worried about the opposite — whether U.S. manufacturers can compete with a rising China. But today I'm turning that question around. What doesn't get enough attention in today's discussions about America's economic competitiveness is that the U.S. remains a robust manufacturing power, despite what is going on in China. And it has some clear competitive advantages over its emerging-market rival. So not only is American manufacturing alive, but kicking pretty aggressively as well. Just take a quick look at the numbers.More