In 2014, the U.S. industrial valve industry will see the fifth straight year of increases in annual shipments. The industry will grow more than 2.1% during the year to reach almost $4.4 billion by year’s end, according to the annual forecast just released by the Valve Manufacturers Association (VMA).
“The increase brings the industry soaring past the peak of 2008, when shipments topped out at $4 billion before suffering a fall in 2009 from the economic recession,” says VMA President William Sandler.
Since that time, “the industry has been rising several percentage points each year to reach this year’s new all-time high. This is a solid sign both that the economic recovery in this nation is resilient and that the valve industry is a stalwart of the nation’s manufacturing business,” he added.
In the 15 end-user industries the association tracks, VMA’s forecast predicts there will be very little change in distribution. The chemical industry will remain the holder of the largest share of shipments at more than 17% while the next largest share of the market will be water and wastewater, which saw a very slight decrease of about 0.1% of market share to about 16.1% of the market. Meanwhile, power generation rose a slight amount (0.1%) to constitute 12.5% of the market. The only other industry that was forecast to see growth is commercial construction, which is expected to rise about 0.1% to make up about 4.5% of the market. The other industries with large shares are Petroleum Refining and Petroleum Production, both with about 12% of market share.
The most popular type of valve product last year was automated or actuated valves, which had more than $1.3 billion in shipments. Of the non-automated types tracked, the largest category was ball valves with $783 million in shipments. All types of valves tracked saw increases in shipments from 2012 to 2013.
The forecast also showed indications of a growing trend of more exports from this country. In 2014, exports will constitute about 21% of shipments.
VMA companies supply 35% of the world’s valves, supporting high-quality skilled jobs for more than 30,000 people directly and thousands more indirectly. In addition, the multi-billion-dollar valve and actuator business supports other key industries that make up its end-user markets. Among the industries that use valves and actuators are chemical processing; petroleum refining; oil and gas exploration, distribution and transmission; power generation; nuclear; water/wastewater; commercial construction and more.