Italian manufacturers of woodworking machinery have been told to “hold on” in the worsening market conditions which have seen orders fall by 15.5% during the second quarter alone.

The second quarter market survey by Acimall (the Italian woodworkinng machinery and tools manufacturers’ association) found consumption is continuing to stagnate. Foreign orders were down by 11.4% and domestic demand fell by 23%, compared to the same period in 2002.

Prices during the first six months of 2003 grew by 1% and forward business has now shrunk to 2.1 months.

A total of 47% of the 200-plus companies interviewed by Acimall reported a stationary production trend, while 43% experienced falling volumes.

Acimall president Luciano Costa has urged companies to hold on during the tough conditions, which he said were affecting the whole global economy.