Printers have reported reduced orders and production, reduced sales and net profits, reduced employment and overtime levels, reduced selling prices, finance more difficult to obtain, reported increases across all cost categories, and worse than expected net balance for outstanding debtors. Despite all this though, printers have reported increased investment in plant and machinery, possibly in the light of the recent drupa trade expo.
The PIAA sees no reason to panic though. According to its expectations, there should be net balance increases in orders, production, sales and net profits during the September 2004 quarter; increased investment in plant and machinery during the next six months; recovery in selling prices; increased availability of finance and labour; and increased employment and overtime levels. On the down side, there is likely to be further increases in all production cost categories – average wages, other labour costs, and average material costs; increased stock levels; and increased number of outstanding debtors.
With the exception of respondents from Tasmania, the outlook for general business expectations over the next six months remains favourable, with the most optimistic state over the outlook period is Queensland.
Comment below to have your say on this story.
If you have a news story or tip-off, get in touch at [email protected]
Sign up to the Sprinter newsletter