Supply Chain Matters and The Ferrari Consulting and Research Group alerts subscribed and general readers, along with research clients that our Q4-2018 Quarterly Newsletter published on Thursday of this week. Registered blog subscribers and existing clients will find notification and links to the Q4 Newsletter in respective email inboxes.
Once again, Q4 remained incredibly busy as well as challenging for multi-industry supply chain teams, with global trade and tariff developments along with supporting the Q4 holiday fulfillment surge period.
Global Supply Chain Activity Levels
Global manufacturing and supply chain activity levels reached a two-year low by the end of December 2018. The broader J.P. Morgan Global Manufacturing PMI reflected a 27-month low in activity levels, with the average PMI having now slipped 2.2 full percentage points from the Average of Q1.
Developed Economies, the prime engine of prior growth again dipped in Q4 and now reflects three quarters of slowdown in momentum. Of the four major Developed regions that we monitor (United States, Eurozone, Japan, Taiwan) all but the United States and Japan had declined by the end of Q4. As we went to publishing this week, the January 2019 indices all declined as-well.
Our overall tracking of Emerging Regions indices at the end of Q3-2018 reflected a similar concerning picture relative to noticeable impacts from ongoing trade and tariff actions. Among the five Emerging regions we track (China, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Vietnam) the average PMI readings in Q4 stabilized to a category average of 51.5. The region with the highest activity levels remained Vietnam but activities within India have shown signs of higher momentum.
Dominant Themes in Q4
Dominant industry and global supply chain management developments during Q4 centered on ongoing trade and tariff tensions that included China and the effects of Brexit, the all-important all-hands support for the holiday fulfillment surge period, the increasing escalation of U.S. transportation costs and also an uptick in M&A activity involving technology providers.
Other Q4 Newsletter Highlights
During Q4, our research arm, The Ferrari Consulting and Research Group published our 35-page Annual Research Advisory, 2019 Predictions for Industry and Global Supply Chains, which is now available for complimentary downloading in our Research Center.
We updated our Newsletter readers to our announcement of Nulogy as an additional Supply Chain Matters blog sponsor and joint collaborator for upcoming research.
We further alerted to our most read blog content in 2018, and the availability of a new recorded podcast featuring Dr. Parag Khanna, author the new book, The Future is Asian.
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Thanks again for your continued readership.
Bob Ferrari, Founder, and Executive Editor
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