As one electrical manufacturer noted, with “no real explanation” readily available for the better than expected business conditions reported by the EBCI panel, the current conditions component leapt by more than 18 points from last month’s level to move back into expansion territory at 52.8 points in July. Although trade policy continued to weigh on business confidence, and weakness in the industrial sector was noted as well, a preponderance of panelists reported better conditions this month, and the share of those indicating worse conditions dropped sharply.
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 component for July ticked up by nearly five points to 36.1 points, leaving it well below the 50-point growth threshold and marking the third consecutive monthly reading in the 30s. The respective shares of respondents expecting better conditions and of those expecting worse conditions declined compared to June’s responses while the percentage of panel members foreseeing unchanged conditions in six months expanded sharply.