09292016Thu
Last updateWed, 28 Sep 2016 7pm

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Trends & Forecasts

Global Economic Outlook 2017

Global Economic Outlook 2017While there are obvious differences from country to country, one could reasonably generalize by saying that what we have today is a combination of low growth, low inflation, increasingly ineffective economic policies, and increasingly destructive politics. Global growth has been stuck below its long-term average for five years; 2017 may be the sixth (Figure 1).


What’s in Store for the Construction Market?

Randy GiggardAs was the case with many of the presenters at VMA’s Market Outlook Workshop held in August 2016, Randy Giggard of FMI Consulting noted that availability of labor at all levels is a major concern in the construction business.

“The shortage of skilled labor at all levels is no surprise,” he said. “While the construction industry first recognized the declining supply of construction labor as early as the mid-1980s, the problem has increased since the recession.” During the recession, many in the industry found careers in other sectors and have no desire to come back to the construction field. Additionally, baby boomers are retiring at an astounding rate and fewer young workers are entering the industry, both in the field and in management.

The Nation’s Confidence in the Economy Looks Brighter

One major change in the economic picture that’s occurred since the beginning of this year is that “we’re starting to see improvement in terms of sentiment,” according to Chad Moutray, chief economist for the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). He gave a third-quarter update via webcast July 21.

“When I meet with manufacturing leaders around the country, I’m often asked: have we hit rock bottom? Are we now moving in the right direction? Some of our most recent numbers indicate that’s the case,” he said.

Moutray went on to give a cautionary, but mostly positive outlook, citing a number of sources.

3D Printing: A New Era for Valve Manufacturing?

3D Printing A New Era for Valve ManufacturingWith new technology being developed virtually every day, 3D printing has the potential to change how valve engineers develop and refine products, and how users are able to see how a particular valve can fit into their process.

In the Spring 2015 edition of VALVE Magazine, we featured a comprehensive article on additive manufacturing (AM) or 3D printing. But a great deal can happen in the world of technology in a year, and AM is no exception. Here’s an update on the newest ways AM is being used within the valve industry.

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