The Conveyor Equipment Manufacturers Association (CEMA) just issued its semiannual sales report, and you might say it "conveyed" some pretty good news. The group reported that overall industry orders (bookings) for the first six months of 2012 tallied $5.46 billion—up 22.8 percent over the same period in 2011. Actual shipments (referred to as "industry billed sales") reached an estimated $5.2 billion for the first six months of 2012. That represents a hefty 30.4-percent jump over the same period in 2011.
CEMA tracks new orders and shipped sales volume in nine classes of unit-handling equipment and four classes of bulk-handling equipment. In the bulk-conveying area, orders were up 40.8 percent and shipments were up 40.5 percent. Unit-handling orders and shipments rose 10.0 percent and 22.1 percent, respectively.
Executives from CEMA member companies who attended the group's fall meeting were bullish on the outlook for the balance of the year. They predicted shipments for the entire year would be up 17 to 20 percent over 2011—a notable change from CEMA's March 2012 spring meeting, when attendees forecast a 10-percent increase for the year.