The U.S. exported nearly $140 billion in March, making the month the strongest ever for U.S. exports. Panjiva’s Trendspotting report shows that March 2012′s $139 billion in exports represented a 7% increase from March 2011 and was $3 billion higher than the next highest month, January 2011. So, what are the top products and countries of import that drove the increase in U.S. exports?
Civilian aircraft, engines, and parts were the top driver of U.S. exports in March 2012, together comprising over $8.5 billion. In dollar terms, aircraft exports increased 29% from March 2011 to March 2012. Japan and the UAE doubled spending on civilian aircraft imports from the U.S. — other top buyers included China and France. See Panjiva’s report here:
The U.S. exported $1.5 billion more in oil this March than last, which constituted a 36% increase. The top buyers of U.S. oil are the Netherlands, Mexico, Brazil, Singapore, and Peru. See Panjiva’s report here.
Cars and Trucks
Exports of motor vehicles jumped by 146%, from $216 million in March 2011 to $534 million in March 2012. The top importers were Germany, the United Kingdom, and Canada, each doubling imports of U.S. cars. See Panjiva’s report here.
Earlier today, Lear Corp., a major supplier to the auto industry, filed for bankruptcy protection. Lear has a global supply chain, so the Panjiva research team took a look at its shipment history to see if there were tell-tale signs of the company’s demise. See below. Major drop-off in January, and it moved onto the Panjiva Watch List in February.
See our previous analyses of other bankruptcies in the auto industry.
Yesterday Visteon, a major auto parts supplier, filed for Chapter 11. So did Metaldyne. Both have global supply chains, so our research team took a look at their shipping data — to see if there were tell-tale signs that these companies were in trouble.
Indeed, things looked grim starting for Visteon in January of 2008:
Similarly, things looked grim for Metaldyne starting in February of 2008:
Thought I’d share some of the recent mentions of Panjiva across the web.
“One in four major Chinese manufacturers shipped less than half as much to U.S. customers in November through January than they did a year earlier, [Panjiva CEO Josh Green] said.”
“Panjiva data shows that 132 of the Big Three’s overseas suppliers wound up on Panjiva’s watch list at the end of January 2009″
“Yesterday, Panjiva came out with news that paints a dangerous and ugly picture when it comes to the financial viability of global suppliers.”
“What can you do about supplier disappearing acts? I’d recommend a heathy dose of supplier risk preventive medicine to start, using both internal performance and quality related information as well as proactive third-party content from providers like Panjiva and D&B.”
Supply & Demand Chain Executive
“Panjiva analysis shows nearly half of large U.S. buyers doing business with troubled global manufacturers; ‘they never even tell you they are in trouble…they just disappear’”
After the announcement that Rick Wagoner is being forced out, the Panjiva team decided to take another look at shipments to GM from their global suppliers. About 10 days ago, we described the drop in shipments to GM from September of 2007 to January of 2009. It turns out, from January to February of this year, there was a further 6% drop in shipments to GM. Compared to February of last year, the number of shipments to GM is off 42%.
Methodological note: though this graph looks much the same as the previous GM graph (i.e., massive drop-off), there is an important difference. It turns out that we have data on shipments to GM’s Mexican operations, and this time around, we included these shipments in our analysis… Hence, more shipments across all time periods.
Today, the Wall Street Journal announced that the domestic auto suppliers are getting help. The Panjiva research team is looking into these domestic auto suppliers. In the meantime, take a look at the data on the Big Three’s relationships with their overseas suppliers. Indeed, shipments from overseas suppliers to the Big Three have dropped precipitously:
- In July of 2007, Ford received received 914 shipments from overseas suppliers. By January of 2009, this number had dropped to 514 shipments… a 44% decline from its July 07 peak.
- In September of 2007, GM received received 223 shipments from overseas suppliers. By January of 2009, this number had dropped to 84 shipments… a 62% decline from its September 07 peak.
- In November of 2007, Chrysler received received 342 shipments from overseas suppliers. By January of 2009, this number had dropped to 38 shipments… an 89% decline from its November 07 peak.
(If you compare January 09 to January 08, the declines are 25%, 50%, and 71%, respectively.)
These massive drop-offs in shipments from suppliers are indicative of diminished Big Three expectations about future sales. Not to be underestimated is the impact that these drop-offs will have on suppliers. Many of the Big Three’s overseas suppliers (132) were on Panjiva’s Watch List as of the end of January, as a result of suffering a 50% decline in volume shipped to U.S. customers in the most recent three month period versus the same period a year ago. That’s about 16% of the Big Three’s overseas suppliers.
Those charged with assisting the auto industry are right to worry about the health of suppliers. Even if consumer demand picks up, the Big Three will not survive if their supply chains disappear. However, it’s not just domestic suppliers that are in trouble right now — overseas suppliers are in trouble too.
PDF: Panjiva Analysis of Big Three Imports