Markit US manufacturing PMI 03/13
At the beginning of every month, the slew of purchasing managers' index (PMI) data gives investors a glimpse of how the world's industries are performing - and unlike in the UK and Europe, it seems the US has offered a glimmer of hope.
The world's number-one economy, according to the report compiled by Markit, enjoyed a strong rise in manufacturing output in March, although the rate of increase eased to a three-month low.
Nevertheless, this is buoying news for the 3D printing market, as the US is home to the biggest names in the 3D printing industry: 3D Systems, Stratasys and ExOne - so if the US economy is recovering then this means a better environment in which these firms can do business.
3D printing technologies and developments are most present in the manufacturing sector, as they are becoming increasingly mainstream in industries such as aerospace and automotive manufacturing.
Markit's latest PMI for the superpower posted a reading of 54.6 for March 2013. PMIs work in such a way that any figure higher than the benchmark of 50 indicates growth and therefore the US's manufacturing sector is in a state of modest expansion.
Furthermore, growth is speeding up, as last month's data is greater than the 54.3 recorded in February, however, it undercut a flash estimate of 54.9.
Companies in the US manufacturing sector look increasingly likely to invest in new software and hardware thanks to this news, as new orders grew strongly, while the rate of job creation for the 31-day period quickened.
Large businesses with more than 500 employees continued to report a steep climb in output over March, while organisations with less than 100 employees recorded the strongest rise in production in nearly three years on the back of the fastest rate of new order growth in a year.
Chief Economist at Markit Chris Williamson said: "The Fed will want to see this pattern of stronger production growth and faster job creation sustained for some time, and will be especially keen to see how the sector performs when facing fiscal headwinds in the coming months. However, policymakers will be reassured by the strong performance of the manufacturing economy so far this year."