While there is certainly good news in the manufacturing economy these days, the latest Global Connections trade forecast from HSBC predicts flat demand for manufactured products in the near term.
Why the tepid outlook? HSBC predicts flat demand for the next three years in Europe and North America. It notes that purchasing manager indices for global manufacturing are either slowing or contracting in Europe.
It also expects the "bedding down" of supply chains in emerging economies in Asia and Latin America as manufactured goods become traded increasingly within the region.
This reflects a broader trend where trade within these regions will grow faster than trade with the developed world.