U.S. Tire Manufacturers Association (USTMA) released key findings from an economic outlook analysis to identify trends and strategic opportunities for the U.S. tire manufacturing industry over the next five years and relevant issues influencing transportation. The analysis, conducted in late 2020 by a top economist, provides insights into four focus areas—economic impact and recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, digital transformation, changing societal views on mobility and environmental stewardship.
“There is a natural connection between priorities of the tire manufacturing industry and revitalizing infrastructure. The safety and sustainability of the life cycle of our products depends on having safe bridges and roads to travel, and even exploring how recycled tires can help create longer-lasting roads,” said Anne Forristall Luke, president and CEO of USTMA. “And as we are grateful for the signs of recovery our sector has experienced in recent months, including better-than-expected results for tire shipments in 2020, we are also encouraged that some of the key report findings align with strategic initiatives already underway within the tire manufacturing sector.”
“Our experience navigating the impacts of the pandemic reaffirmed that tire manufacturing is a resilient and essential industry driving the economic engine of the United States, and supporting more than 284,000 jobs,” added Forristall Luke.
In 2020, COVID-19 brought a deep global recession that cut consumer spending, hurt industrial production, and up-ended normal business planning. The collapse in travel for work, pleasure, and shopping in 2020 drove demand for virtually all goods and services associated with travel down sharply. As a result, spending on both new and used light vehicles fell by nearly a third, while spending on tires fared comparatively better, only falling 15 percent from February to April, while total consumer spending slumped nearly 19 percent.