Transportation is the second largest market segment, totaling 1.18 billion pounds in 2012 and representing 29.0 percent of total domestic shipments. Shipments to transportation end uses increased by 9.0 percent over 2011. Passenger cars, trucks, and buses account for 44.8 percent of shipments within this segment, followed by trailers and semi-trailers at 32.4 percent. Other market sectors include consumer durables, machinery and equipment, electrical, and others. These sectors represent 10.5, 12.4, 11.0, and 2.8 percent of total domestic shipments, respectively. Exports represent 6.0 percent of total industry shipments.
The Associations note that figures on shipments and end uses for 2001 to 2011 have been revised significantly. The revisions are based on extensive research and efforts by members of both Associations, and the process included a cooperative effort by billet suppliers and extruders to develop more accurate estimates of shipments and end uses. Processed through the Statistics Department at the Aluminum Association, members conducted blind surveys to develop total estimates for non-participating extruders. Additionally, the Aluminum Association conducted a billet shipments survey, the results of which supported the conclusion that previous estimates of the size of the aluminum extrusion market had been understated.
"Going forward, we plan to conduct annual surveys on billet shipments and recovery rates to determine total shipments by the aluminum extrusion industry. The results of existing surveys, such as the AEC annual end use survey, will be used to benchmark shipments to major markets and specific end uses," said AEC President Rand Baldwin.
"We are striving to continuously improve our estimates and both Associations encourage additional companies to participate in the monthly, quarterly and annual surveys, so that we can produce more accurate figures about the industry and its value to the North American economy," said Tim Gill Vice President, Business Information and Statistics for The Aluminum Association.
Statistics are based on the results of surveys conducted by AAI in cooperation with the AEC, as well as estimates developed by the Aluminum Association's Statistical and Market Research Committee. The surveys compute and summarize changes within each specific market segment. The AAI monthly and quarterly surveys represent about 60 percent of industry shipments. The annual end use survey for 2012 compiled data from 54 participants and these participants represent approximately 77 percent of total industry shipments. The contributions by these 54 participants are an important component of our process to develop end use estimates for the industry.
An aluminum extrusion is produced by pushing heated metal through a die by a press to produce a desired form or shape. Typical applications for extruded products include window and door frames (residential and nonresidential), store fronts and entrances, tub and shower enclosures, modular systems, rail cars, aircraft and aerospace, automobiles and light trucks, solar mounting and racking systems, heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) components, consumer products, machinery components, heat exchangers, electrical power transmission and distribution, and more.