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Supply Chain by the Numbers

- Jan. 30, 2020 -

  Supply Chain by the Numbers for Jan. 30, 2020

US GDP Lukewarm Again in Q4, Full Year; Shippers Finally Getting some Leverage in Warehouse Market; Sainsbury Pledges Big Spend to Go Carbon Neutral; 3M Announced more Layoffs




That's how many square feet of warehouse space developers will add to the US market in 2020. That according to the latest assessment from real estate firm Cushman & Wakefield. It compares to 242 square feet of space the research projects will be leased by shippers this year, giving tenants a bit of an edge for the first time in quite a while. The tight warehouse market in many areas has driven vacancy rates to near record lows, naturally sending rates higher. However, Cushman & Wakefield says last year that the industrial real-estate market moved to a better balance between supply and demand. In fact, Cushman & Wakefield says that builders actually added more space in North America in 2019 than shippers leased, the first time that has happened since 2009. However, warehouse space remains tight by historical standards. Cushman & Wakefield expects vacancy rates to rise to 5.2% by the end of 2021, up a bit from 4.6% at the end of 2019. Meanwhile, warehouse developer Prologis expects its portfolio of properties across the US, Europe and other regions will end 2020 96% to 97% occupied. The company said it is looking to boost rents as leases expire.


1.5 Billion Pounds

That's how much UK retailer Sainsbury's has pledged to spend to become a carbon-neutral business by 2040, 10 years ahead of the government's target for a net-zero economy. The supermarket chain said the 20-year program would include cutting its carbon emissions, food waste, plastic packaging and water usage, while increasing recycling, promoting healthy and sustainable eating, and ensuring that its operations are net positive for biodiversity. Measures planned by the retailer include making its refrigerator's more efficient, increasing the use of alternative and low-carbon fuels among its vehicles, and halving its use of plastic packaging by 2025. The retailer is piloting a deposit return scheme in five stores where customers receive a 5 pence coupon for every plastic bottle they recycle.



That was the first estimate for US real GDP growth in Q4 for from the Commerce Department, matching consensus estimates. For the full year, the economy grew 2.3%, below the 2.9% increase from 2018 and the 2.4% gain in 2017. So that means yet again the US economy failed to reach 3% growth in the year, which amazingly hasn't been seen since 2005, the longest streak by far since the government started tracking GDP. Maybe we need "Bush-anomics?"



That's how many jobs will be lost at manufacturing giant 3M, in a new round of layoffs. Those job cuts come on top of the 2,000 jobs the company trimmed less than a year ago. 3M cited a deep slump in US manufacturing and a trade war that has slowed economic growth in China as factors necessitating the cuts. "We continued to face softness in certain end markets, namely China, automotive, and electronics," said CEO Michael Roman. Earlier this month, the Institute for Supply Management reported that U.S. manufacturing activity in December fell to its lowest monthly level in more than a decade.

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