Clark, N.J., Dec. 14, 2023 – The GEP Global Supply Chain Volatility Index — a leading indicator tracking demand conditions, shortages, transportation costs, inventories and backlogs based on a monthly survey of 27,000 businesses — was once again in negative territory at -0.34 in November, compared to -0.41 in October, indicating an eighth successive month of spare capacity across global supply chains.
“This persistent, month-after-month, excess vendor capacity means that the end to the global manufacturing recession is still some way off,” explained Todd Bremer, vice president, consulting, GEP. “North America continues to buck the global economic headwinds. Continuing excess supplier capacity in Asia gives manufacturers greater leverage to drive down prices in 2024.”
Weakness in demand for raw materials, components and commodities continued in November, although the global slump in purchasing activity did ease, primarily because of North America, which seems to be well past the peak of its manufacturing industry downturn. In fact, output and new orders at intermediate goods makers in the U.S. — which includes chemicals, metals, electronic components and electrical equipment manufacturers — improved in November.
On the other hand, Europe’s slump in demand remained severe, reflecting recessionary conditions. Capacity at Asia’s suppliers went underutilized to one of the greatest degrees in the post-pandemic era, boding ill for the near-term outlook of global manufacturing.
Slight improvements in global item supply, easing transport cost pressures and destocking, as seen in GEP’s November data, provide additional evidence of continuing weakness across the global economy.
Interpretating the data:
NOVEMBER 2023 KEY FINDINGS
REGIONAL SUPPLY CHAIN VOLATILITY
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The next release of the GEP Global Supply Chain Volatility Index will be 8 a.m. ET, January 12, 2024.
The GEP Global Supply Chain Volatility Index is produced by S&P Global and GEP. It is derived from S&P Global’s PMI® surveys, sent to companies in over 40 countries, totaling around 27,000 companies. The headline figure is a weighted sum of six sub-indices derived from PMI data, PMI Comments Trackers and PMI Commodity Price & Supply Indicators compiled by S&P Global.
A Supply Chain Volatility Index is also published at a regional level for Europe, Asia, North America and the U.K. For more information about the methodology, click here.
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