U.S. cutting tool consumption totaled $176 million in October 2013, a 13.1% increase from September. Though the total is down 5.8% from October 2012, it is the highest cutting tool sales have been since April.

This number comes from The Cutting Tool Market Report, a joint effort of the United States Cutting Tool Institute and The Association for Manufacturing Technology, which provides monthly figures based on 80% of the total market, which includes wood and other manufacturing sectors.

Because cutting tools need to be replaced more frequently than machine tools, their consumption can be seen as “a true measure of actual production levels,” says Tom Haag, president of the United States Cutting Tool Institute, who is optimistic about the rise.

“The important indicators show the automobile and aerospace industries are forecast for stable and steady growth in 2014,” he says.

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