ASA Insights
Jul. 3, 2013

Happy Fourth of July!

Editor's Note: In observance of the Independence Day holiday, ASA offices will be closed on Thursday, July 4. Regular office hours will resume on Friday, July 5. The staff of ASA and the ASA Education Foundation wish everyone a safe and happy holiday!More

Employer Mandate Delayed Until After 2014 Midterms
The Hill
The employer mandate requiring businesses to provide workers with health insurance has been delayed by one year, the Obama administration announced yesterday. Delaying the requirement until 2015 is an enormous victory for businesses that lobbied against the healthcare law. For the past three years, ASA has been working hard in Washington to inform policy makers of the negative impact the Employer Mandate will have on our members.More

Preview 2014 Industry Forecast on Aug. 14
American Supply Association
On Wednesday, Aug. 14, at 2 p.m. Eastern, an ASA members-only industry forecast webinar will be presented by Alan Beaulieu, author of ASA's monthly ASA Advisor forecasting newsletter and presenter of the annual Industry Forecast presentation at NetworkASA. The webinar is the second in a series of members-only webinars that ASA is offering in 2013. See what is in store for the remainder of the year and a preview of Alan's 2014 Industry Forecast, which he'll present at NetworkASA 2013. There will be ample opportunity for Q&A and for learning how each company can incorporate rate-of-change into their planning process. ASA members may access webinar login details by sending an email request to

Learn Valuable Training Secrets from Industry Leaders
American Supply Association
We all know the importance of having a fully trained workforce in our industry. We also have the daily challenge of keeping costs down while increasing the bottom line. How can you possibly do all of this at the same time? Find out by participating in an ASA Trainers Networking Council FREE WEBINAR on Tuesday, July 30, at 11 a.m. Central.More

WEBINAR: Don't Leave Profit on the Table
American Supply Association
Join us for a FREE one-hour webinar with Tom Noon, principal at Industry Insights, scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 7, at 1:30 p.m. Eastern. During this time, Tom will review the highlights, answer questions and offer suggestions on how to get the most form the results of this year's study.More

Time to Check Your Pulse
American Supply Association
Each month, ASA partners with Industry Insights to compile data from wholesaler members that provides a snapshot on industry performance and how it relates to the broader economy. The value of the report is directly related to the number of wholesaler firms that contribute data each month — the greater the number of respondents, the more comprehensive and useful is the report and accompanying analysis. The participation deadline for wholesaler members to submit data for the June 2013 report is Friday, July 12. Learn more about the FREE and EXCLUSIVE benefit that ASA members frequently use when making key decisions.More

Supply Chain Partners Learn New Ideas and Share Insights in Chicago
Midwest Distributors Association
The Midwest Distributors Association held its 2013 Executive Leadership Conference at the Omni Hotel in Chicago on June 17-18. According to the association's president, Tim Milford with Milford Supply Co. based in St. Louis, "This annual event offers participating members a compelling opportunity for learning and discussion with engaging and knowledgeable speakers as well as the localized networking and camaraderie that is so important for the people that represent the future of their businesses and the PHCP and industrial PVF industry."More

Retaining Your No. 1 Asset: Employees
Industrial Distribution
There is one absolute that applies to every company, independent of industry: You cannot expect to operate efficiently without dedicated and skilled employees. When looking at the manufacturing industry specifically, finding a highly skilled workforce has proven to be one of the greatest challenges. With such a limited amount of talent in the applicant pool, companies are left to compete for the best employees. Then, after the best employees are brought into the fold, the challenge becomes keeping them and further growing their skills.More

New Orders for Manufactured Goods Up 2.1% in May
Modern Distribution Management
New orders for manufactured goods in May, up three of the last four months, increased 2.1% to $485 billion, according to the full report from U.S. Census Bureau. This followed a 1.3% April increase. Excluding transportation, new orders increased 0.6%. Shipments, up following two consecutive monthly decreases, increased 1% to $483.6 billion. This followed a 0.7% April decrease. Unfilled orders, up three of the last four months, increased 0.8% to $1 trillion. This followed a 0.3% April increase. The unfilled orders-to-shipments ratio was 6.21, down from 6.28 in April.More

How US Manufacturers Save on Logistics South of the Border
Material Handling & Logistics
American OEMs operating in Mexico are saving money and improving efficiency by sourcing from U.S. suppliers located south of the border. Even after considerable NAFTA-related growth, the capacity of transportation and ports of entry into Mexico has lagged behind demand. Other factors, including counter-terrorism measures at the border and extended waiting times at customs, have contributed to congestion at ports of entry, resulting in unpredictable delays and higher costs in shipping materials from the U.S. to south of the border.More