Sko-Die E-Newsletter - December 2018

Patrick Steininger

Just a short note to thank all of our customers and suppliers for a great 2018 year! 

I hope this note finds your business doing well, and that the parts we shipped throughout the year to your facility made for a successful 2018. As usual, Sko-Die will continue to move forward in 2019 with the thought of improvement in equipment, people, and processes to aid in our customers’ success.

Some of the highlights specific to the investments Sko-Die made in equipment and technology this year include a new 60 ton Bruderer punch press, a vision inspection system, a large surface grinder, a Brother Machining Center for our tool room, and 2 new lift trucks to help our material handling be more efficient.

In addtion to our equipment investments, our employee team has been growing as well. This year a Quality Engineer, Design Engineer, Sales Engineer, and Controller were all brought on board to our team. Also, quite a few operators and set up personnel were added to support our increase in sales in a variety of departments.

We look forward to supplying quality parts, on time, in a safe manner in 2019!

Happy Holidays!

Patrick Steininger

Sko-Die Holiday Schedule
Sko-Die will be closing for the holidays starting December 21st, and reopening January 2nd.

Industry News (Michael McGuire)

The Sko-Die team is very thankful to our customers and to our suppliers for their support that we received throughout 2018. This year has seen continuing strength of our overall manufacturing sector. These conditions have translated into opportunities for us to grow our business with our valued customers and to advance new opportunities in the market. 

With most of the macroeconomic indicators trending positive, signs point to a continuation of a robust manufacturing economy heading in the 2019. As of November, the Purchasing Managers Index notched the 27th straight month of expansion for the Manufacturing Sector. Employment is strong, which is no surprise to any of us that are trying to expand our work force with talented bench strength and next generation talent. General demand and orders are on the rise, so there is reason for optimism headed into 2019. But with that strength brings challenges that we all must consider as we plan for the coming year any beyond.

One such factor that came to the forefront in 2018 is the effect of tariffs imposed on imports of globally produced raw materials and goods and how that plays into the broader discussion about Free Trade. One can hardly deny that we are operating in a Global economy, regardless of whether one transacts directly with any global entities. Perhaps the most relevant discussion should be about how to define Free Trade vs Fair Trade. It seems that endless opinions exist on that topic. Perhaps in 2019, progress will be made to align the goals of Fair Trade and Free Trade towards sustainable policies to benefit the US manufacturing sector as a whole. 

We have certainly seen inflationary pressure on materials result of the section 232 Tariffs. The question becomes whether the long-term goals of the implementation of these tariffs in keeping and growing manufacturing jobs here in the USA will be achieved. One consideration is whether applying those tariffs further downstream to the finished goods produced from materials covered under the Tariff is a key to the long-term success of this trade policy. Regardless of where one sides on this topic, there is no doubt that the effect of tariffs and an evolving global trade policy must be woven into the decision process in the domestic manufacturing sector in 2019 and beyond.

From a more regional perspective, 2018 marks the 26th anniversary of the original signing of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).  One would be hard pressed to find a manufacturing business in the USA that was not affected in some way by this agreement.  

Whether the promise of NAFTA materialized is a question that each company and participant in the economy must answer for themselves. What will the next iteration of that agreement bring?  Only 2019 will answer that question.

At Sko-Die, we are a domestic manufacturer, proud to begin our 72nd year in business. We are a strong proponent of policies that promote a strong and sustainable domestic manufacturing sector. We are continuing our strategy of investing in our business to position ourselves to meet the growing demand that a strong manufacturing economy drives. We are thankful for the support of all our customers and supply partners in 2018 and look forward to a prosperous 2019 with you.

At Sko-Die we remain -

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For any questions or inquiries, please contact:

Michael McGuire, Director of Sales, 800-486-4756 X120,

For more information visit


Sko-Die Inc.| 8050 Austin Ave. - Morton Grove, IL 60053
Phone: 800-486-4756 | Fax: 847-966-0322

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