Positive Manufacturing Data, Labor Slowdowns and Election Results

The Institute for Supply Management has some positive news for the manufacturing industry this week. ISM reported its manufacturing index hit a reading of 59 in October - up from 56.6 in September. Production activity also hit its highest level since May 2004 last month.

Toyota also has good news to boast about: the Japanese automaker increased its 2014 profit forecast by 12.4% and said it expects sales in North America to continue to rise.

The Pacific Northwest supply chain, however, is facing some challenges. The International Longshore & Warehouse and the Pacific Maritime Association are in the midst of labor contract negotiations, which is causing a slowdown in activity and productivity at local ports by as much as 60%.

The votes are in, and the news is out: Republicans have taken control of the Senate, which is seen as a victory for businesses who will now have a “more receptive audience” regarding the corporate tax system, financial regulations and other major issues.

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