US robotic orders surge 40% as labor shortages, inflation persist

Former Trump administration economist Stephen Moore predicts ‘one other 18 months or so’ of very excessive costs. Inflation and the tight labor market have gotten a win-win for robots.  Orders for office robots in the US surged 40% year-over-year within the first quarter of 2022 as corporations are leveraging automation […]

Inflation and the tight labor market have gotten a win-win for robots. 

Orders for office robots in the US surged 40% year-over-year within the first quarter of 2022 as corporations are leveraging automation to fight ongoing labor shortages and lower prices as inflation continues to hover close to a 40-year-high.

In keeping with information from the Affiliation for Advancing Automation (A3), round 9,000 robots collectively value roughly $544 million have been bought in the US through the first quarter, in comparison with greater than 6,400 robots collectively value roughly $346 million bought throughout the identical interval a 12 months in the past. 

Throughout North America, over 11,500 robots collectively value roughly $646 million have been bought within the three-month interval from January by way of March, probably the most ever bought in a single quarter. The North America figures signify progress of 28% and 43% respectively over the primary quarter of 2021 and seven% and 25% respectively over the fourth quarter of 2021, the earlier finest quarter. 

Boston Dymanics, one of many leaders in automation, ceaselessly showcases the work they have been doing with “Spot.”

A3 represents almost 1,100 automation producers, element suppliers, system integrators, finish customers, tutorial establishments, analysis teams and consulting corporations throughout the globe.


The primary quarter of 2022 marked the seventh out of the final 9 quarters the place non-automotive prospects ordered extra robots than automotive prospects. 

Non-automotive prospects throughout North America ordered a complete of 6,122 models through the quarter, in comparison with the 5,476 models ordered by automotive-related prospects. Unit gross sales to automotive unique tools producers grew 15% year-over-year whereas orders from automotive element corporations climbed 22% year-over-year. 

Robotic orders surged 40% year-over-year within the metals trade, climbed 29% year-over-year within the plastics and rubber trade, jumped 23% year-over-year within the semiconductor, electronics and photonics trade, rose 21% year-over-year within the meals and client items trade and elevated 14% within the life sciences, pharma, and biomedicine trade. In the meantime, all different industries noticed robotic order progress of 56% year-over-year. 

“Firms of all sizes, and more and more small and medium-sized corporations, are deploying robotics and automation as a result of it’s extra possible than ever earlier than,” A3 vp of membership and enterprise intelligence Alex Shikany instructed FOX Enterprise. “There are a selection of funding fashions, new {hardware} and software program, and extra user-friendly experiences for patrons to get pleasure from.”


The info comes as there are at the moment 11.4 million job openings in the US. The Labor Division reported that 4.4 million Individuals, or about 2.9% of the workforce, give up their jobs in April. In the course of the month, the U.S. financial system added a stronger-than-expected 428,000 nonfarm jobs.

“The main pattern we’re listening to about relative to labor in automation proper now’s that corporations can’t discover individuals,” Shikany added. “So a lot of our members are hiring proper now however can’t fill the positions resulting from lack of certified candidates.”

Inflation has additionally taken a chew out of employees’ wage features, with actual common hourly earnings falling 2.6% on an annual foundation in April.

The nonpartisan Congressional Price range Workplace initiatives that inflation will stay elevated within the near-term, with the buyer value index anticipated to hit 4.7% for the whole thing of 2022. Whereas that’s down barely from the 6.7% recorded in 2021 — the best degree in 4 many years — it is nonetheless considerably increased than the Federal Reserve desires. Inflation is just not anticipated to fall to the Fed’s most well-liked degree of two% till 2024, in keeping with the CBO. 

In its Way forward for Jobs Report revealed in October 2020, the World Financial Discussion board estimated that the time spent on present duties at work by people and machines shall be equal by 2025. WEF predicts that 85 million jobs could also be displaced by a shift within the division of labor between people and machines by 2025, whereas 97 million new jobs could emerge which can be extra tailored to the brand new division of labor between people, machines and algorithms.

Fox Enterprise’ Megan Henney contributed to this report

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