About a third of purchasing and supply executives say they plan to increase capital expenditures in 2018 compared to 2017, according to the Institute for Supply Management’s semiannual forecast released Monday.
Manufacturers expect to increase their capital spending by about 10 percent on average in 2018, a significant rise from the 2.7 percent bump predicted at the end of last year. Non-manufacturers expect to see a 6.8 percent increase in spending, down slightly from the 7 percent predicted in December.
The most frequently cited cause in the ISM survey for the enhanced capital spending was the strong economy. Of the 35 percent of manufacturing executives who said they have increased their spending plans in the last six months, nearly 70 percent cited the “general business outlook.” Just 14 percent cited the tax bill that was signed into law in December. Among the 31 percent of non-manufacturing executives who plan to increase capital outlays, 58 percent cited the business environment, while 19 percent cited the tax overhaul.