New orders for machine tools and related technologies rose 3.4% to $470.44 million during August, from $460.3 million in July, and marked the first monthly increase since May. The data is contained in the U.S. Manufacturing Technology Orders report, prepared by AMT – The Association for Manufacturing Technology, which collects actual data on production and distribution of manufacturing technology, including both domestic and imported equipment.

Though demand rebounded in August, the value of the sales represented a decline of 4.7% versus the sale $493.60 million during August 2011. Even so, 2012 year-to-date U.S. manufacturing technology sales now total $3,606.56 million — up 4.1% compared with the first eight months of 2011.

“It’s a great sign for the industry to see both month-to-month and year-over-year gains in August, historically one of the slowest months for orders,” stated AMT president Douglas K. Woods.  “With U.S. manufacturers still working through five months’ worth of backlogs along with what seemed to be exceptional order activity at IMTS this September, we may very well see a record year for USMTO over and above the last peak in 2011.”

In its report of regional activity, AMT found that new orders for manufacturing technology in the Northeast totaled $49.18 million during August, a decline of 23.9% from $64.60 million in July, and down 24.4% from $65.06 million reported for August 2011.

For the January-August 2012 period, the Northeast region has had total orders valued at $490.68 million, down 2.0% versus the comparable figure for 2011, $500.78 million.

In the South, the August total for manufacturing technology orders was $64.77 million, an increase of just 1.0% from July’s total of $64.11 million, but a rise of 11.7% more than the total for August 2011. The region’s year-to-date total is $515.92 million, 12.0% above the $460.77 million total for January-August 2011.

New orders for machine tools and related equipment rose 11% to$152.95 million in theMidwest during August, from $137.74 million during July. The new figure also represents 6.6% over the August 2011 total, $143.44 million.

For the eight months of 2012 to-date, the Midwest’s regional total for manufacturing technology orders stands at $1,158.02 million, an increase of 1.6% over $1,139.39 million recorded during January-August 2012.

New orders for manufacturing technology from the Central U.S. rose 4.8% to $124.49 million during August, from 118.77 million in July, though the result is a 30.0% decline from the $177.85 million total for August 2011.

The Central region has a year-to-date total of $1,036.10 million, 7.8% above $960.73 totaled during the January-August 2011 period.

Finally, in the West, the USMTO report found August manufacturing technology orders rose 13.5% to $79.04 million, from $69.65 million in July. The new figure is also 60.5% greater than the August 2011 total, $49.24 million.  And, the region’s year-to-date total for new orders is $405.85 million, just 0.4% above the $404.23 on record for January-August 2011.