With Sequester 2013 having taken effect last Friday, March 1, some industry representatives have weighed in on how the glass industry may or not be affected in the coming weeks and months.
“During the American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) Annual Conference last week, economist Dr. Esmael Adibi reported that while home prices are expected to increase 3.5 percent in 2013, overall economic growth will remain weak,” says Rich Walker, president and CEO of AAMA. “Sequestration will only serve to weaken the economy further. Additional taxes on businesses lead to unemployment, which is inevitably bad for the economy and housing starts. Congress must recognize the importance of properly addressing not just sequestration, but also the overall financial strength of our country in order to ensure the Great Recession doesn’t continue any longer than it already has.”
“We don’t know the immediate impact of the sequester since its impacts will be gradually felt over the next few weeks and months,” adds Michael O’Brien, president and CEO of the Window and Door Manufacturers Association. “It certainly could impact federal programs, such as Energy Star, but we are not sure to what extent at this point. WDMA does believe that the federal government needs to get spending under control but it needs to be done in a reasoned and rational manner with both parties working together so the government is not lurching from one artificial deadline to another leading to more uncertainty for the economy.”
Industry expert and consultant Lyle Hill, president of Keytech North America, who also authors a blog for usgnn.com™, offered the following outlook.
“This impacts the glass industry due to the fact that it reduces overall government spending and a lot of building work around the country is tied to government financing. Anytime the government stops spending, the economy is impacted negatively in the short run so I think it is safe to say that the effect will be negative on the industry and especially so to those who rely on various governmental agencies for a lot of their work,” he says. “What is not clear is what the exact timing of any of this might be and whether or not the private sector will make up for the decline in governmental spending. It is also not clear exactly which areas of the economy will be most heavily impacted and there are some who believe that because in reality the sequester amount is such a small percentage of overall government spending that there may be no noticeable impact for many commercial sectors of the economy. The stock market certainly doesn’t seem to be bothered by the sequester.”
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