Medical and Automotive
Medical Equipment Production Growing Rapidly
Medical care spending has grown at a fairly consistent rate throughout 2014, with the annual rate of change staying between 2.1 and 2.4 percent all year. However, the month-over-month rate of change has begun to grow at a slower rate, decelerating each of the previous three months and growing at just 1.8 percent in September. That was the slowest rate of month-over-month growth since March 2013. It appears that the annual rate of change in medical care spending will grow slower as we move into 2015.
In response to the rapidly accelerating growth in medical care spending in 2011 and 2012, medical equipment production has been growing at nearly its fastest rate in a decade, showing an annual rate of close to 6 percent since the beginning of 2013. However, while the annual rate may accelerate for a few more months, it appears that we are nearing the peak rate of growth in medical equipment production.
According to the Gardner Research Capital Spending Survey, medical device manufacturers are planning to spend slightly less on machine tools in 2015 but significantly more on primary plastics processing equipment. After a significant increase in spending on molds the last two years, medical device manufacturers indicated that they would spend slightly less on them next year. However, the level of mold spending by the medical device industry will still be at its second highest since at least 2008.