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NEMA’s EBCI Index Drops Sharply in August

Sept. 12, 2019
The current component’s relapse to a reading of less than 50 points was accompanied by continuing concerns about the uncertain nature of trade and tariff policy intermixed with reports of strong markets in some sectors.

NEMA’s EBCI Index monitoring the electrical market conditions continued on its worst run in recent years with a double-digit decline in August.
The nearly 12-point decline in the current conditions component, which now stands at 41.2 points for August, was largely driven by a drop in the share of respondents who reported better conditions, coupled with an increase of similar magnitude in the proportion that noted unchanged conditions.

The ElectroIndustry Business Conditions Index (EBCI) is a monthly survey of senior executives at electrical manufacturers published by the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA), Rosslyn, VA. Any score over the 50-point level indicates a greater number of panelists see conditions improving than see them deteriorating.
The future conditions measure contracted from 36.1 points last month to 26.5 points in August. This latest reading marked the fourth consecutive month in which the future component languished below 50 points. Respondents expressed concern about general slowing, or even recession, with some again citing lack of policy clarity, especially regarding trade, as a key driver of expectations. Meanwhile, some held out hope for a resolution to the ongoing trade spat with China.