ASA Insights
Aug. 30, 2012

Save $100 — REGISTER NOW for NetworkASA 2012
American Supply Association
NetworkASA 2012 – Your Company, Your Industry, Your Future is quickly approaching. Your industry's premier networking and educational event will be held Oct. 17-20 at the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek. This year's presenters include world-renowned editor, publisher and businessman Steve Forbes and Congressional Medal of Honor recipient Dakota Meyer. Also recently added to the jam-packed schedule of events are workshops covering Lead – Sustainability Planning, ESOPs and a State of the Industry address by Michael Werner. Please note that the room block for NetworkASA 2012 is currently at 85% occupancy, so please reserve your rooms ASAP and REGISTER NOW to avoid the Sept. 1 price increase!More

Last Call: Recognize Your Company for Safety Excellence
American Supply Association
The deadline has been extended until tomorrow, Friday, Aug. 31, for the ASA Safety Committee's first annual Safety Recognition Awards. The Safety Recognition Awards were created to highlight ASA member efforts to achieve safety excellence while providing an opportunity to remind member companies of the importance of safety to their own company goals, including financial targets.More

CFOs Prepare to Meet in Chicago Next Month
American Supply Association
Seasoned banking executive Ted Kopczynski of Citibank, N.A., will provide ASA member CFOs insight into negotiating lines of credit, ins and outs of private equity capital and strategies for building banking relationships at ASA's upcoming CFO Networking Council meeting, to be held Friday, Sept. 21, at the Chicago Marriott Magnificent Mile. Please click here or contact Margaret Bean at 630-467-0000, ext. 211, for more meeting details.More

Economy Plumbing Supply Hosts 80th Anniversary Party
American Supply Association
Herbert Strong Jr., left, and
John Strong pictured at
Economy's 80th Anniversary

Economy Plumbing Supply recently hosted an 80th anniversary party at their downtown Indianapolis store. Originally founded by Herbert Strong Sr. in 1932, the company is now in its third generation of family ownership under John Strong. John's father, Herbert Strong Jr. retired in 1998.More

Home Prices Gain Again, but Consumer Mood Cools
Home prices rose for the fifth consecutive month in June, a fresh sign of improvement as the recovery in the housing market picks up steam. But in a reminder of how fragile the broader economy remains, another measure of consumers' economic views released Tuesday deteriorated in August to the lowest in nine months as Americans were more pessimistic about business and labor market prospects. The housing sector has been a bright spot, with the stabilization in prices since February suggesting the long-struggling market finally has turned a corner. Still, the recovery is expected to be slow as the sector faces several hurdles, including ongoing foreclosures and a large number of underwater homeowners.More

Construction Employment Drops in Half of US Metro Areas
Modern Distribution Management
Construction employment declined in 165 out of 337 metropolitan areas between July 2011 and July 2012, increased in 123 and was stagnant in 49, according to an analysis of federal employment data from the Associated General Contractors of America. Association officials said the new data comes out as many metro areas continue to struggle with constricting public sector budgets and uneven private sector growth.More

New Orders for Durable Goods Up 4.2% in July
Modern Distribution Management
New orders for manufactured durable goods in July increased $9.4 billion or 4.2% to $230.7 billion, the U.S. Census Bureau announced in its Advance Report. This increase, up three consecutive months, followed a 1.6% June increase. Excluding transportation, new orders decreased 0.4%. Excluding defense, new orders increased 5.7%. Transportation equipment, up five of the last six months, had the largest increase, $9.9 billion or 14.1% to $80.4 billion.More

Will Technology Resurrect US Manufacturing?
EE Times
If recent moves by a few companies lead to a resurgence of manufacturing in the U.S., it won't necessarily be patriotism — or even rising Chinese labor costs — that drives the trend. The main factor will be innovative U.S. technology. That's the opinion that Vivek Wadhwa, a former software entrepreneur turned academic and pundit, lays out in a recent piece in Foreign Policy magazine.More

U.S. Steel Reports Profit Drop, but Beats Views
U.S. Steel Corp.'s X second-quarter net income plummeted 55% as sales at the company's flat-rolled products segment were cut in half, though the European division returned to profitability. Results topped expectations. U.S. Steel, the country's top steelmaker by production, returned to profitability in mid-2011 after nine quarters in the red amid a boom in North American oil and gas drilling.More

Manufacturing Jobs Still Reeling From Recession
The Huffington Post
U.S. manufacturing output has risen significantly since it hit rock bottom in 2009, with a 20% growth over the past three years. But manufacturing jobs haven't kept pace — only 4% more jobs were added over the same time period.More