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West Michigan’s manufacturing economic survey turned from steady in June to flat in July

Seidman College of Business aerial photo
Grand Valley State University
Seidman College of Business at Grand Valley State University

July Institute for Supply Management Institute Research Survey indicates west Michigan economy is stable.

“Statistically, this month's survey of purchasing managers in West Michigan is about as flat as it can possibly be.”

Brian G. Long is director of Supply Management Research in the Seidman College of Business at Grand Valley State University.

“However, it is our automotive parts producers that are holding us up. Other industries like office furniture are softening. But again, I say softening, not collapsing like we would expect in a recession.”

Long points out the most important survey index is new orders. When demand is strong companies invest in materials, equipment, and human resources.

“So, right now, with most of our resent orders indexes turning in flat or stable, we have to declare that the west Michigan economy is stable; neither expanding nor contracting.”

Long says nothing currently points to an impending recession. Rather, a slowdown or what several economists are calling a “soft landing.”

Patrick joined WGVU Public Media in December, 2008 after eight years of investigative reporting at Grand Rapids' WOOD-TV8 and three years at WYTV News Channel 33 in Youngstown, Ohio. As News and Public Affairs Director, Patrick manages our daily radio news operation and public interest television programming. An award-winning reporter, Patrick has won multiple Michigan Associated Press Best Reporter/Anchor awards and is a three-time Academy of Television Arts & Sciences EMMY Award winner with 14 nominations.