Truck suppliers predict better times ahead

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. — Heavy-duty manufacturers and suppliers are becoming more optimistic about business, according to a quarterly survey of members by the Heavy Duty Manufacturers Association.

HDMA’s quarterly "Supplier Barometer" found that optimists now outnumber pessimists, and the number of companies reporting growth more than doubled.

When asked if their opinion of the 12-month outlook for their business had become more optimistic or more pessimistic over the past month, the percentage who said their view was more optimistic had more than doubled from the first quarter. The number who were more pessimistic dropped significantly, as well.

More companies in the survey reported they are hiring, adding production capacity and adding to inventories in the second quarter as compared to the first.

Of the key factors influencing business, weak sales was again at the top, followed by healthcare costs. Regulatory and legal issues replaced Globalization in the top 5 factors by a very narrow margin.

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