Looking for a positive year ahead
After a rough 18+ months, I think we’re all ready for positive news in the coming year. And 2022 is showing some upward trending signs. I recently attended an economic outlook talk given by Jim Meil of ACT Research Co., LLC, presented by the NFPA, and came away feeling moderately better about things.
For sure, Meil noted some issues that many companies are currently facing, including not being able to satisfy customer demand, a lack of good workers, inflation affecting costs of materials, the basic availability of those materials, and difficulty in predicting realistic delivery times.
However, for many companies, especially those related to the construction industries, 2022 and 2023 are looking to be good years. In speaking to OEMs who produce off -highway equipment, the recent infrastructure bill has them excited for a robust year ahead, especially stacked on top of (let’s be hopeful) a COVID recovery.
As for Meil, he sees plenty of good news: machinery and equipment demand is very, very strong. There’s a competitive advantage for asset holders. He said to just examine the asset and property prices. “Take a look at the stock market,” Meil said. “If you own assets now, you’re in a strong, commanding position. Year-end holidays will be frantic, so for anybody who deals in the world of materials and transportation, know that it’s going to be crazy out there.”
For U.S. farm machinery, there was a peak about a year ago, but he thinks that the market should see a tailwind in 2022 from commodity prices and demand om China. Oil & gas equipment is in the midst of a multi-year depression, but that is starting to turn positive as oil prices escalate. Meil said that oil prices of roughly $80/bbl is a game-changer for that industry.
“This is a promising market as we start to see a turnaround. I think that’s a solid bet for 2022 and 2023. After that, energy is a crazy fi eld. And then you also have this thought of a political will towards putting constraints on hydrocarbons as an energy source, so you have that element of growth,” Meil said.
I wish you and yours much health and success in the New Year, and I’ll end with another of Meil’s points. While there’s prosperity to be had, remember that good times are hard work — so that doesn’t mean we can sit back and relax. Let’s all put in the hard work and make 2022 memorable and satisfying.
Paul J. Heney – VP, Editorial Director
On Twitter @wtwh_paulheney
Filed Under: DIGITAL ISSUES