The National Electrical Manufacturers Association’s (NEMA) monthly indicator of current North American business conditions declined for the second month in a row in December. The Electroindustry Business Confidence Index (EBCI) for current North American conditions dropped to 30 from 39.6 and trailed the 50-point threshold indicative of industry expansion for a fifth straight month. In contrast, the EBCI for future North American conditions, a measure of executives’ expectations for conditions six months ahead, climbed nearly 15 points in December to 48. Although still slightly below the critical 50-point barrier, December’s reading brought the index to its highest level since April.

Meanwhile, each of the six EBCIs for the other world regions included in the survey reached or exceeded the 50-point growth threshold in December, with five of the six indices climbing from a month earlier.

The EBCI gauges the business confidence of the electroindustry in Asia, Europe, North America and Latin America and is based on the results of a monthly survey of senior managers at NEMA member companies. Those companies represent more than 80 percent of the electroindustry.      EC