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Ohio Down to 5% Unemployment in February

April 2, 2021

According to the last week’s jobs report from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, Ohio’s unemployment rate was 5.0% in February 2021, down from 5.3% in January. This compares to 4.7% in February 2020.

Employment losses in manufacturing January to February were (-300).

From February 2020 to February 2021, manufacturing lost 36,600 jobs in durable goods (-34,300) and nondurable goods (-2,300). 3/26/2021

ODJFS Releases January Leading Indicators, Predicts Employment Growth

April 2, 2021

According to the January Ohio Leading Indicators report published by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS), if the January employment rebound continues throughout 2021 in a similar magnitude, total employment is predicted to increase at an annual rate of 0.23% for the next six months in Ohio.

ODJFS also reports that Ohio’s average weekly manufacturing hours increased to 42.8 in January. 3/29/2021

Here’s a Snapshot of U.S. Manufacturing Activity in March

April 2, 2021

Chad Moutray, senior economist with the National Association of Manufacturers posted this week: “The Institute for Supply Management reported that manufacturing activity expanded at the fastest pace since Dec. 1983, with the headline index up from 60.8 in February to 64.7 in March. The data were very solid across the board, including strong growth for new orders (up from 64.8 to 68.0—best since Jan. 2004), production (up from 63.2 to 68.1—best since Jan. 2004) and employment (up from 54.4 to 59.6—best since Feb. 2018). Exports (down from 57.2 to 54.5) continued to expand modestly despite softening somewhat in March.

“Supply chain disruptions remain a significant challenge, including labor market and logistics struggles. The index for supplier deliveries (up from 72.0 to 76.6) soared to its highest reading since Apr. 1974, with sharply slower delivery times in March. (In this case, readings above 50 are consistent with slower deliveries.) The backlog of orders (up from 64.0 to 67.5) jumped to the highest on record, dating back to when the question was added in January 1993.

“With that in mind, prices (down from 86.0 to 85.6) decelerated marginally in March from February’s pace, which was the fastest rate since July 2008.” 4/1/2021

Durable-Goods Orders Drop for First Time Since Last Spring

March 26, 2021

Orders for durable manufactured goods fell last month by 1.1% as U.S. factories faced supply-chain challenges due to poor weather and other factors. The drop ended a streak of nine months of gains. Chad Moutray, chief economist for the National Association of Manufacturers, told The Wall Street Journal (subscription) that “this should not take away from the larger story of strength in manufacturing, which has rebounded strongly since last spring.”

Moutray reports the IHS Markit Flash U.S. Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index strengthened slightly, rising from 58.6 in February to 59.0 in March. 3/24/2021

Cleveland Fed Examines Supply Chain Concerns

March 26, 2021

While supply chain disruptions have plagued manufacturers since the start of the pandemic, microchip shortages and constraints in steel production have affected many OMA members in recent months. The Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland has published this report on how supply chain challenges have impacted regional businesses, concluding that disruptions will continue “to evolve for the foreseeable future.” 3/23/2021

Legislature Overrides Veto of Health Orders Bill

March 26, 2021

Ohio lawmakers this week voted to override Gov. Mike DeWine’s veto of Senate Bill 22, which gives the General Assembly the power to rescind an administration’s emergency executive actions by passing a concurrent resolution. The legislation also places restrictions on the ability of the Ohio Department of Health and local health departments to issue quarantine and isolation orders.

The bill won’t take effect for another 90 days. Gov. DeWine has said the legislation could be challenged in court. OMA Connections Partner Roetzel has published this summary of SB 22. 3/25/2021

Coming Soon: Biden’s Infrastructure Proposal

March 26, 2021

President Joe Biden next week will travel to Pittsburgh to unveil a multitrillion-dollar infrastructure plan, according to reports. Politico.com wrote “it’s generally described as an infrastructure package, but that’s a bit of a misnomer” since the $3 trillion to $4 trillion plan would attempt to address “several strains of progressive thought” — from redistributive policies and racial equality, to climate change, to a “Made in America manufacturing renaissance as a way to counter China.”

As the federal debt nears $30 trillion, details “are not yet clear” on how the plan would be funded, but President Biden is expecting a range of tax options from Treasury officials to help pay for the plan. The National Association of Manufacturers supports a comprehensive infrastructure plan, but has warned that corporate tax increases would do great harm to America’s competitiveness. 3/24/2021

General Assembly Wraps up Work on $8.3 Billion Transportation Bill

March 26, 2021

Concluding work on the first of four budget bills, the General Assembly approved House Bill 74, a two-year $8.3 billion transportation measure. HB 74 allocates monies from the federal government and state fuel tax for highway construction and maintenance. It also funds the state Department of Transportation, Highway Patrol, and Bureau of Motor Vehicles. The bill now goes to the governor’s desk for consideration ahead of the March 31 deadline. 3/25/2021

Export Assistance for Ohio Businesses

March 26, 2021

The Ohio Development Services Agency (DSA) works with representatives internationally to provide opportunities for businesses to increase export sales and create jobs through the International Market Support Program. Representatives will assist by providing detailed market research and matchmaking with potential customers. Click here for more information. 3/22/2021

Leadership Lessons to Strengthen Your Business

March 26, 2021

At noon Tuesday, March 30, OMA Connections Partner CliftonLarsonAllen will host a free webinar featuring Carey Lohrenz — the Navy’s first female F-14 Tomcat fighter pilot and author of the bestselling book “Fearless Leadership.” The discussion will focus on creating high-performing teams, driving accountability, and building a financially healthy business. Register here. 3/25/2021