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Data Analysis

Welcome to the WhatTheyThink data analysis section. As a service to the printing and publishing industries, WhatTheyThink provides access to economic, trend and other data that is valuable to industry executives for strategic planning and other purposes. This is also an excellent way for industry executives to stay current with the latest trends. This includes proprietary data developed by our own Dr. Joe Webb, Director of the WhatTheyThink economics and research center, as well as data from a variety of partner sources.

 

 

Advertising Agency Revenues Still Climbing

Advertising Agency Revenues Still Climbing

Published: June 24, 2014

The chart below shows the latest revenue data, on an inflation-adjusted basis, for ad agencies and publishers. Note how ad agency revenues are rising. While there have always been agencies that specialize in certain media, like television, direct mail, or others, the industry is media agnostic in the aggregate. Its job is to increase the positive visibility of its clients and help spur their customers into action.

 

Selected Generally “Non-Offset” Products and Services Offered by US Commercial Printers

Selected Generally “Non-Offset” Products and Services Offered by US Commercial Printers

Published: June 18, 2014

 

Latest Print and Content Creation Employment Data

Latest Print and Content Creation Employment Data

Published: June 11, 2014

 

Since June 2009, rate of overall USPS price increases almost 4x the rate of increase in commercial printing prices

Since June 2009, rate of overall USPS price increases almost 4x the rate of increase in commercial printing prices

Published: June 5, 2014

 

Though Q1-2014 GDP was -1%, the Year-to-Year Trend Remains in the +2% Range

Though Q1-2014 GDP was -1%, the Year-to-Year Trend Remains in the +2% Range

Published: May 29, 2014

The Bureau of Economic Analysis released the second revision of Q1-2014 US Gross Domestic Product (GDP), indicating a contraction of the US economy in the quarter. As reported in prior (“laughable and embarassing”) analysis, an inventory buildup in the last two quarters of 2013 distorted the underlying condition of the economy.

 

Q1-2014 Business Conditions Compared to Q1-2013

Q1-2014 Business Conditions Compared to Q1-2013

Published: May 29, 2014

Business conditions were generally good, with more than 33% reporting business increases of 6% or more. About 13% of respondents indicated business decreases of 6% or more

 

NFIB Small Business Index Still Between Two Recession Bottoms

NFIB Small Business Index Still Between Two Recession Bottoms

Published: May 22, 2014

 

Labor Market Net Hiring Turns Negative

Labor Market Net Hiring Turns Negative

Published: May 15, 2014

US employment data has many cross-currents: the unemployment rate is down, but the labor participation rate is at 35-year lows. Last week the Bureau of Labor Statistics published its JOLTS report, which shows they dynamic factors at play in the labor market. This chart shows the percentage of hires less the number of quits on a year-to-year basis. Note in the chart below the rapid rise in employment as the recession ended and the recovery began, and also how it has narrowed and turned negative in recent months. It's been mainly negative for about 18 months.

 

Q1-2014 US Commercial Printing Shipments Down -4% Compared to 2013

Q1-2014 US Commercial Printing Shipments Down -4% Compared to 2013

Published: May 8, 2014

March 2013 US commercial printing shipments were down -$148 million (-2.2%) compared to 2012. The first quarter was down -$770 billion (-4%). On an inflation-adjusted basis, shipments were down -$270 million (-5.4%) and down -$1.05 billion (-5.4%) for the quarter.

 

Recovery Indicators Rebound; Q1-2014 GDP Below 1% but Corrects for Business Inventory Misjudgments

Recovery Indicators Rebound; Q1-2014 GDP Below 1% but Corrects for Business Inventory Misjudgments

Published: May 8, 2014

The recovery indicators rebounded since last month. New orders for manufacturers remained at the same level that indicates growth.

 

April Printing Employment +1,000

April Printing Employment +1,000

Published: May 7, 2014

Printing employment in April rose by 1,000 workers. It is always hard to determine if these were actual workers or if the changes were the result of issues with the estimation models of the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Production workers were the greatest part of the increase (800).

 

2013 Newspaper Revenue

2013 Newspaper Revenue

Published: April 23, 2014

Circulation revenue for U.S. newspapers recorded a second consecutive year of growth, rising 3.7% to $10.87 billion in 2013 according to figures released by the Newspaper Association of America. Total revenue was $37.59 billion in 2013, a loss of 2.6 percent over 2012.

 

Table of Latest Inflation Multipliers

Table of Latest Inflation Multipliers

Published: April 23, 2014

Below is the latest set of multipliers based on the Consumer Price Index. Multiply your historical financial statements by the figures below to adjust data to the CPI for the first quarter of this year.

 

Printing Industry Shipments and Profits

Printing Industry Shipments and Profits

Published: April 18, 2014

For the year, profits were $4.34 billion. On an inflation-adjusted basis, that was the highest level of industry profits since 2007. This is despite there being $28 billion less printing shipments, 8,000 fewer printing establishments, and 73,000 fewer employees. It was the best profits per establishment ($173,000) since 2000.

 

Printing Profits per Employee Rise

Printing Profits per Employee Rise

Published: April 17, 2014

Profits per employee increased to higher levels since 2000. Industry consolidation is a big factor in this report. It is not just mergers and acquisitions, but also plant closures and bankruptcies, and the opening of new businesses that absorb the best and most appropriate resources of the closed plants, and also the strategic changes that surviving companies make as they respond and anticipate marketplace changes, absorbing the sales volume of departed competitors.

 

Employment-Population Ratio Still Below Pre-Recession Levels

Employment-Population Ratio Still Below Pre-Recession Levels

Published: April 10, 2014

One of the measures of the health of the labor market is the comparison of the total population to civilian employment. This measure has yet to approach levels achieved prior to the recession. This measure is important because it follows the growth in population. The number of workers is now nearly what it was at the start of the recession, but population has grown about 6% since that time. In rough terms, this means that the economy is short about 5.6 million jobs.

 

Employment Changes in the Printing and Content Creation Industries

Employment Changes in the Printing and Content Creation Industries

Published: April 7, 2014

 

Ad Agency Revenues On Steady Rise Higher

Ad Agency Revenues On Steady Rise Higher

Published: March 16, 2014

Since the second quarter of 2007, the first quarter for which we can create four-quarter inflation-adjusted moving totals, ad agency revenues are up more than 13%. Publishing industries have note fared well at all.

 

Advertising Agency Employment Surpasses Commercial Printing, Reflecting the Shift from Traditional Media

Advertising Agency Employment Surpasses Commercial Printing, Reflecting the Shift from Traditional Media

Published: February 7, 2014

The major news in the data update is that employment in advertising agencies surpassed that of the printing industry in July 2013. For 2013, printing employment was down by -12,600 (-2.8%). The biggest change was in employees outside of production who were -8,400 of that decline (-5.7%). Graphic design employment was down slightly for the year, but these data do not include freelancers, which are an essential part of that business. Inside the advertising agency employment data are public relations employees, the main area of employment growth in this sector.

 

2013 US Commercial Printing Shipments Reach $77.6 Billion

2013 US Commercial Printing Shipments Reach $77.6 Billion

Published: February 4, 2014

The Department of Commerce released December 2013 and revised November data. December shipments were $6.271B (-3.7% vs. Dec. 2012). On a current dollar basis, the total for the year was $77.6B, -3.8%. After adjusting for inflation using the Consumer Price Index, shipments were down -5.1%. The chart below shows current dollar and inflation-adjusted shipments starting with 2007

 

Inflation-adjusted US Printing and Print Services Shipments

Inflation-adjusted US Printing and Print Services Shipments

Published: February 4, 2014

 

Inflation-adjusted Annualized US Publishing & Advertising Agency Revenues

Inflation-adjusted Annualized US Publishing & Advertising Agency Revenues

Published: January 14, 2014

This chart shows the inflation-adjusted revenue trends for selected content-creation businesses. Note how advertising revenues have increased despite the declines in the revenues to publishers. Agencies have shifted much of their efforts to developing “earned media” (a/k/a search engines, social media, e-marketing and numerous other digital formats), and the production of it.

 

Six Consecutive Profitable Quarters for U.S. Commercial Printing Businesses

Six Consecutive Profitable Quarters for U.S. Commercial Printing Businesses

Published: June 15, 2011

The first quarter of 2011 continued a welcome continuation of profitability for the industry. The industry shakeout of unprofitable businesses, and the better management of healthier businesses continues to create an improved bottom line, but there are still great challenges ahead. The restructuring of the industry will be a continuing process in 2011 and beyond.

 

April 2011 U.S. Commercial Printing Shipments Down

April 2011 U.S. Commercial Printing Shipments Down

Published: June 9, 2011

April 2011 commercial printing shipments were $7.08 billion, down -$109 million (-1.5%) compared to 2010. Adjusting for inflation, shipments were down -$366 million (-4.5%).

 

March 2011 U.S. Commercial Printing Shipments Up; Twelve Months of Increases

March 2011 U.S. Commercial Printing Shipments Up; Twelve Months of Increases

Published: May 6, 2011

March printing shipments were up, resulting in 12 consecutive months of increase. Dr. Webb explains how the easy comparisons to the prior year are about to end, and that the balance of 2011 will be about the same as 2010. He reviews the upcoming data revisions from the Commerce Department on May 13, the importance of inflation adjusting company financial data, and the shipment rates of Canada's commercial printing industry.

 

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