Manufacturer improvement in order and production processes has also had an impact. Deere and Caterpillar have production systems designed to provide dealers with rapid build and shipment of machines. Those systems have reduced (not eliminated) the need for dealer inventories. Again, Cleveland Research said: “The moderating demand and higher-than-normal inventory levels is leading to shorter lead times from Deere.We now see lead times in the 30-to-60-day range in most cases depending on product category and order classification (retail vs. stock order).”
Most everybody continues to forecast optimistic outlooks for the second half of 2013. One manufacturer’s rep told me he thinks that if 2013 is flat compared with 2012 he will consider it a good year. I think that is as good an estimate of how 2013 will turn out as any I can come up with.
* Manfredi’s analysis is based on results from
- These equipment manufacturers: Astec Industries, Caterpillar, Deere, Joy Global, Komatsu North America, Manitowoc, Oshkosh, Terex, Toro and Volvo CE.
- These equipment distributors: Cervus, Titan Machinery, Toromont and Wajax
- And these rental companies: United Rentals and Hertz Equipment Rental