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Supply Chain by the Numbers

- March 8 , 2012


Supply Chain by the Numbers for Week of March 8, 2012


Toyota Maps Half its Supply Chain; Truckload Rates Keep Climbing; Global Manufacturing Holding On; A Hiring Bounty for Welders and more



Roughly the percentage of Toyota's direct suppliers in Japan which declined to participate in Toyota's effort to fully map its supply chain in an effort to reduce is supply chain risk from the type of severe supply chain disruption it incurred after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami there. Those suppliers declined to share info about their own suppliers for competitive reasons, but Toyota said those suppliers have largely promised to make changes that will reduce their Time-to-Recovery (TTR) down to just two weeks, which is Toyota's overall goal. See Toyota Taking Massive Effort to Reduce Its Supply Chain Risk in Japan.




Level of the JP Morgan's global Purchasing Managers Index for February, which aggregates PMI results from the US and 28 other countries, based on the methodology started by the Institute for Supply Management years ago, Now, measures based on the US approach have been developed in many other countries. As always with these PMI measures, a score over 50 indicates manufacturing expansion, under 50 contraction. The February score was down just a bit from the 51.4 level in January, which means there is expansion but at a decelerating rate. The highest PMI output indices were posted by Denmark, South Africa, India and the US. Most Euro countries had contraction.


The "bounty" that Mazak Corp. of Florence, KY is currently offering to new welders that join the machine tools manufacturer, as despite high levels of overall unemployment many manufacturing jobs in more skilled positions go unfilled. Mazak is having a very hard time hiring for the 20 welding positions it has open. It is far from the only US company in this boat. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 264,000 job openings in the manufacturing sector at the end of last year, compared with approximately 100,000 two years ago, with most of these in more skilled positions.



Percent by which per mile truckload rates were up in February over the same month in 2011, according to the latest Truckload Linehaul Index report from Cass Freight Systems. The 109.1 level in February was down slightly from January’s all-time high of 109.4, based on the index of 100 set at the beginning of 2005. The index reached a bottom with a score of about 95 in late summer 2010, meaning rates are up about 15% since that time (109.1/95). It has really been a diagonal path straight up from the bottom, and that's before higher fuel surcharges.

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