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The modest growth of industry

The latest Bank of Italy Survey places the focus on the degree of progress in the industrial sector and indicates possible areas of development

 Open to the world. Including to the one next to one’s own facility. And not just in terms of focus on social movements, for those in charge such as entrepreneurs and managers of what one’s company achieves. An awareness of what is happening “outside” should also translate into careful observation of how the economic system in which one is active is evolving. By using a guide to the right tools for this awareness. This is what is constituted by the Survey of industrial corporations and services which the Bank of Italy has just issued and which represents an excellent way of discovering the key features of what have been the results of the industrial system in 2015 and what are the forecasts for 2016.

Based on what has been collected and set out by the various regional offices of the Central Institution, in the course of the year industry and services demonstrated their resilience by achieving good results. Overall sales grew by around 4%, and sales volumes increased for around two thirds of companies (as against just over half in 2014). Certainly, sales prices maintained only modest progress and over half the companies reported no or negative changes in prices. Despite everything, however, expenditure on investments was boosted. And there is also greater confidence for progress in 2016. All this while even the construction company sector seems to have seen an interruption to the negative period initiated in 2008 (although the uncertainties for this year are still very evident).

What is most significant here, however, and what emerges from the summary pages written by the economists from the Bank of Italy, is the indication of the vitality of manufacturing industry and services. This is a sign of a change in the overall movements in the economy and probably of the effects of an economic and industrial policy which differs from that of the past, but also a sign of the desire to produce and progress which has not been suppressed by the adverse economic environment of recent years. It is a fact, for example, that in 2015 the number of hours worked increased. And this is also an indication of a corporate culture which is used to battling it out. And it is precisely from scenarios such as those envisaged by the Bank of Italy report that one can find the right ingredient better to understand how to take action, and how to appreciate more keenly the changes to which such action contributes. The just under twenty pages of the Survey (together with the attached statistical study which completes it) represent a good read, which is useful for a better understanding of entrepreneurial and managerial actions.

Indagine sulle imprese industriali e dei servizi (Survey of industrial corporations and services)

et.al.

Supplementi al Bollettino Statistico. (Supplements to the Statistical Bulletin) Indagini campionarie, Nuova serie, Anno XXVI, luglio 2016 (Sample Surveys, New series, Year XXVI, July 2016)