Demand adressed to the manufacturing industry improves in the first quarter 2014Quarterly business survey (goods-producing industries) - April 2014

In the first quarter 2014, while the improvement of foreign demand has gone on, the global demand has gone up anew : the corresponding balances stand now above their long-term average. The industrialists forecast an improvement of global demand and a slowdown of foreign demand.

Informations rapides
No 92
Paru le : 24/04/2014
Prochaine parution le : 24/10/2017 at 08:45 - October 2017

Demand

Improvement of global and foreign demand

In the first quarter 2014, while the improvement of foreign demand has gone on, the global demand has gone up anew : the corresponding balances stand now above their long-term average. The industrialists forecast an improvement of global demand and a slowdown of foreign demand.

Graphang1 – Past change in demand

Production factors

The tensions on the means of production are stable at a weak level

Over the first quarter 2014, the tensions of the means of production are almost unchanged at a weak level. So the productive capacity utilization rate is stable compared to the previous quarter and still remains below its average level, indicating that the means of production are underused in the manufacturing industry. The balance on production bottlenecks has slightly increased at a level close to its long-term average.

Graphang2 – Change in the productive capacity utilisation rate

tableau1 – Industrialists' opinion : demand and production factors

Balance of opinion, in %
Industrialists' opinion : demand and production factors
Manufacturing industry Aver.* Juil. 13 Oct. 13 Jan. 14 Avril 14
Global demand
Past change 0 –11 1 1 7
Future change 1 –6 2 4 4
Foreign demand
Past change 3 –5 1 5 8
Future change 4 –2 12 14 4
Production factors
Production bottlenecks (in %) 22 23 25 23 25
Assessment of productive capacity 14 14 12 13 17
Productive capacity utilisation rate (in %) 85 80 80 80 80
Difficulties of supply and demand
Difficulties of supply and demand 8 12 11 11 13
Difficulties of supply 20 14 14 19 18
Difficulties of demand 44 50 46 49 46
  • * : Long-term average.
  • Source : Quaterly business survey - Insee

Workforce

Slightly decrease of the balance on the changes of workforce size

According to the business managers, the rate of job losses in the industry has slightly increased over the last months but is still close to its long term average. Over the next months, industrialists consider that the change in workforce size remain unfavorable.

The percentage of companies experiencing hiring difficulties in the manufacturing industry is nearly stable and is close to its long-term average.

Graphang3 – Workforce size in the manufacturing industry

Wages and working time

According to the business managers in the manufacturing industry, the wages have increased by 0,4 % over the first quarter 2014.

In April, more industrialists than in January indicate a fall in the weekly working time, while as many of them indicate a fall in the weekly working time over the next months.

Cash-flow and selling prices

In the first quarter 2014, the proportion of industrialists experiencing cash-flow problems has slightly gone up compared to the previous quarter but is still very close to its average level.

According to the business managers, the selling prices in the manufacturing industry are stable in the first quarter 2014. They forecast a slightly decrease in selling prices for the next quarter.

Competitive position

According to the industrialists, in the first quarter 2014, their competitive position is nearly stable on domestic market and on foreign markets inside EU but has deteriorated on foreign markets outside EU, where the corresponding balance stands markedly below its average level on this three markets.

The general exportation expectations remain deteriorated: the corresponding balance has slightly decreased and remains below its long-term average.

Graphang4 – Competitive position

tableau2 – Industrialists'opinion : employment, competitive position, cash-flow, wags and selling prices

Balance of opinion, in %
Industrialists'opinion : employment, competitive position, cash-flow, wags and selling prices
Manufacturing industry Aver.* Juil. 13 Oct. 13 Jan. 14 Avril 14
Workforce size
Past change –11 –12 –11 –8 –10
Expected change –13 –13 –6 –10 –12
Difficulties hiring 28 27 28 26 27
Working time
Past change –3 –1 1 0 –2
Expected change –5 –2 –1 –3 –3
Cash-flow and wages
Cash-flow problems 15 15 14 13 16
Past wages 0,5 0,4 0,3 0,4 0,4
Selling prices
Past change 0,2 –0,6 0,2 –0,5 0,0
Expected change 0,2 0,0 –0,2 0,2 –0,2
Competitive position
On domestic market 1 –4 –3 1 0
On foreign markets inside EU –1 –9 –3 –2 –1
On foreign markets outside EU –1 0 –3 –3 –10
General exportation expectations –10 –31 –5 –13 –15
  • * : Long-term average.
  • Source : Quaterly business survey - Insee