ASA Insights
Dec. 19, 2013

A Renewed Vitality at ASA Benefits Industry
The Wholesaler
A renewed energy and momentum is surrounding the American Supply Association — evidenced most recently by the tremendous turnout at NetworkASA 2013 in Washington, D.C., and the announcement that for the second straight year the group has met its membership goal. With membership of more than 300 wholesaling firms across the U.S., the support of manufacturers, solidified relationships with the buying groups, and a dedicated team of staff and volunteer leaders, ASA is poised once again to be a driving force in our industry.More

Answers to Your Questions about Compensation and Benefits
American Supply Association
In spring 2014, ASA and its independent regional affiliates will release a comprehensive employee and executive compensation report. This will be the first time since 2010 that this kind of data will be available for the PHCP and industrial PVF wholesale-distribution channel. Data collection will begin in early January, and ALL wholesaler members will receive a copy of the final report in exchange for completing the survey questionnaire — at no fee. Please watch for more details after the first of the year.More

REMINDER: You're Listed!
American Supply Association
The Industrial Careers Pathway Employer Database, available at, includes information on all distributor and manufacturer members of ICP Alliance Partner associations: ASA, ISA, NAHAD and PTDA. This online database can be utilized by potential job candidates to learn more about your company. It is searchable by company name; headquarters or branch; manufacturer or distributor; product type; ZIP code; and state or province. Click the above link for details.More

US PVC Prices Set to Rise in 2014
Supply House Times
U.S. prices for polyvinyl chloride, the plastic most widely used in construction, are set to rise by 5 cents per pound in the first two months of 2014. This is a significant price increase in a market that will see producers end the year with a net five-cent increase in their 2013 margins, according to PetroChem Wire's PVC & Pipe Report.More

Beschloss: The 2014 Economic Forecast Still is Convalescent
Supply House Times
In the wake of the arm wrestling between President Barack Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on one hand and House Speaker John Boehner and the GOP on the other, this exaggerated government "shutdown crisis" will have little, if any influence on the 2014 U.S. economy.More

US Homebuilder Confidence Surges in December
The Associated Press via Industrial Distribution
U.S. homebuilders' confidence bounced back strongly this month, a sign that construction and industry hiring may pick up in coming months. The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo builder sentiment index climbed to 58. That was up from 54 in November and matched an eight-year high reached in August. Readings above 50 indicate that more builders view sales conditions as good than poor.More

ISM Semiannual Report Paints a Positive Picture for 2014 Growth
Modern Materials Handling
As has been the case in its respective monthly manufacturing and non-manufacturing reports on business, continued growth remains in the cards for 2014, according to the December 2013 Semiannual Economic Forecast released by the Institute for Supply Management. This report, which is also released in April each year, is based on feedback from U.S.-based purchasing and supply chain executives, manufacturing and non-manufacturing sectors.More

Five Tips for Successful Performance Evaluations
By D. Albert Brannen
Performance evaluation programs can be immensely beneficial to employers. They can help management improve employee performance and adjust staff expectations. However, if done improperly, performance evaluations can create more legal liability than they help to avoid. This article lists five critical tips for making sure your performance evaluation system is on the right track.More