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Gains In Pricing, Work-On-Hand, Hiring, And Hiring Plans Lift NAPL March 2006 Printing Business Index

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Press release from the issuing company

PARAMUS, N.J., MAY 2, 2006 -- NAPL's Printing Business Index (PBI), the graphic communications industry trade association's broadest measure of print activity, rose to 59.1 in March 2006 from 56.5 in February and 55.9 in January. (A reading above 50.0 means more printers report activity is picking up than report activity is slowing down; a reading below 50.0 means the opposite.) Gains in pricing, work-on-hand, hiring, and hiring plans account for the increase. Commercial printing industry sales also increased in the first months of 2006, up 8.5% in February and 5.9% in January, compared to year-earlier levels. "Some of the gains are real-business has clearly accelerated over the last six months," notes Andrew Paparozzi, NAPL vice president and chief economist. "However, much of the increase is cost pass-through-and we still don't have enough pricing power to fully protect margins from all the cost inflation that continues to come our way." The PBI combines input from NAPL's Printing Business Panel about work-on-hand, current business conditions, expected business conditions (confidence), hiring plans, profitability, and other key indicators into a single measure of activity. The NAPL Printing Business Panel is a representative group of more than 300 printers that the Association surveys monthly on a range of key printing issues. Since the same companies are surveyed every time, data are strictly comparable from period to period. The economic analysis comes from NAPL's Printing Economic Research Center (PERC) which produces research and publications sponsored by Heidelberg, Kennesaw, Ga.




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