Domestic manufacturers closed 2012 with a solid showing of new orders for machine tools and related components, bringing the year to a close with a slight improvement over the previous year. December orders were valued at totaled $499.43 million, 17.8% above the November total, but down -9.4% from the December 2011 result.

All the results are included in the latest United States Manufacturing Technology Orders (USMTO) report, a series released by AMT, and based on actual data reported by participating companies. The monthly report covers all orders for manufacturing technology, both domestically built products and imported ones.

The December total brought the full 12-month result for 2012 U.S. machine tool orders to $5.706 billion, a gain of 2.6% on the full year total for 2011, $5.6 billion. The final month’s USMTO report showed another rebound in the monthly activity, which had peaked and dipped throughout 2012. The highlight for 2012 was in September, which included the results of IMTS 2012, the biennial trade show, which drove total sales to $674,234 million.

“Finishing 2012 with the highest order total in 13 years certainly confirms the renaissance of U.S. manufacturing,” stated Douglas K. Woods, president of AMT - The Association For Manufacturing Technology, the trade association representing U.S. machining operations and machine tool manufacturers and distributors. “This also shows the resilience of the industry in the face of GDP contraction in the fourth quarter, along with fiscal and political concerns that have been overshadowing much of the general economy.”