MH Daily Bulletin: January 16

January 16, 2023 • Posted in Daily Bulletin

News relevant to the plastics industry:

At M. Holland

  • M. Holland is the headline sponsor for AMI’s Thermoplastic Concentrates in Orlando on Jan. 24-26. Stop by Booth #16 to speak with our experts and attend a talk on regulatory compliance changes by Christopher Thelen, M. Holland’s Senior Regulatory Specialist, on Jan. 24 at 4:20 pm.
  • M. Holland will be exhibiting at MD&M West in Anaheim on Feb. 7-9. Stop by Booth #4115 to meet our Healthcare team and discuss how M. Holland’s line of medical-grade resins can help you develop safe and effective medical products and packaging.
  • Every year, M. Holland’s market managers take time to reflect on the major trends of the past 12 months. Click here to read our 2023 series, including business insight and recommendations for 3D printing, automotive, color and compounding, electrical and electronics, healthcare, packaging, rotational molding, sustainability, and wire and cable.  

Supply

Supply Chain

Domestic Markets

  • The daily average for new COVID-19 cases declined to 59,246 last week from 67,243 the week before, while average fatalities rose to 558 from 390.
  • Johnson & Johnson is vastly scaling back efforts to produce its COVID-19 vaccine amid slumping demand.
  • COVID-19 exacerbated the nation’s labor shortage last year, reducing the available workforce by as much as 2.6%.
  • Average annual inflation in the U.S. hit 8% last year, the highest in at least three decades:
2022 Inflation Tops Previous Decades
  • The U.S. administration plans to take special cash management measures to avoid breaching a $31.4 trillion debt limit this month, but warned that Congress needs to raise the nation’s debt ceiling by early June to avoid default.
  • Economists still expect higher interest rates to push the U.S. economy into a recession this year despite recent data showing inflation starting to recede.
  • U.S. consumers believe price pressures will ease considerably over the next 12 months, with a survey on Friday showing one-year inflation expectations falling to 4%, the lowest level in almost a year.
  • A widely tracked gauge of U.S. consumer sentiment rose to 64.6 in January from 59.7 in December, the highest reading since April, according to the University of Michigan:
United States Michigan Consumer Sentiment
United States Import Prices MoM
  • In the latest news from quarterly earnings season:
    • The U.S.’s four largest commercial banks reported mixed profits, including JPMorgan Chase (+6%), Bank of America (+2%), Citigroup (-21%) and Wells Fargo (-50%).
    • BlackRock saw profit decline 18%, hit by a global market rout that squeezed fee income.
    • Wendy’s is shaking up leadership amid a broader organizational overhaul that could include staff cuts and new investments. The fast-food chain’s sales grew 6% in the latest quarter.
    • UnitedHealth Group says the “tripledemic” of respiratory diseases this winter did not substantially drive up medical costs, with demand for healthcare services staying in the range of a typical fourth quarter.
  • Bank of New York Mellon plans to cut around 3% of its workforce this year, joining a number of Wall Street firms in trimming headcount to cope with turbulent markets.
  • JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America are continuing to add staff even as the economy softens, breaking with the downsizing trend of other major Wall Street and tech firms.
  • Delta Air Lines expects to see lower-than-expected first-quarter profit due to higher non-fuel operating costs, especially labor.
  • December airfares were up 28.5% from a year earlier, according to the latest inflation data.
  • The price of eggs rose 11.1% in December as the deadliest bird flu outbreak on record continues to devastate poultry flocks across the country.
  • Bed Bath & Beyond is reportedly in talks with private equity firm Sycamore Partners for the sale of its assets.

International Markets

  • Excluding China, COVID-19 infections globally fell 23% week over week, while virus fatalities declined 13%.
  • In the latest China news:
    • China raised the reported COVID-19 death toll since it scrapped its zero-COVID policy last month to 59,938 amid global criticism of the country’s data reporting.
    • The peak of China’s COVID-19 wave is expected to last up to three months and will soon swell over into the nation’s vast countryside where medical resources are scarce, a top Chinese medical expert said.
    • A new study estimates that roughly 900 million people in China have contracted COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic and around 64% of its population currently has the virus.
    • Some researchers predict China’s population may have seen its first decline since 1961 last year, a historic shift with far-reaching implications for the global economy.
    • China’s exports declined further in December, falling 9.9% from a year earlier for the biggest dip since the first month of the pandemic:
China Exports YoY
United Kingdom Monthly GDP MoM

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