Hand and Edge Tools, Except Machine Tools and Handsaws

SIC 3423

Industry report:

Firms in this industry manufacture simple, edged hand-tools, such as files, axes, chisels, prying bars, rulers, soldering irons, tongs, rakes, and cutters for metalworking, woodworking, and general maintenance. Saws and saw blades are discussed in SIC 3425: Saw Blades and Handsaws, while metal-cutting dies and power-driven hand tools, attachments, and accessories appear under the major group for industrial and commercial machinery and computer equipment.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, fewer than 1,000 establishments operate in this category. Industry-wide employment totaled 53,345 workers receiving a payroll of more than $1.8 billion in 2000. Of these, 39,106 worked in production, putting in almost 75 million hours and earning wages of more than $1.11 billion. Overall shipments for the industry were valued at over $5.7 billion in 2001, falling to $5.45 billion in 2005.

After 2001, the U.S. Census Bureau combined the hand and edge tools industry with another category for the purpose of tracking employment, forming the larger category of Hand Tool and Saw Blade Manufacturing. Industry-wide employment in this new, combined category was 44,271 workers in 2004, which was down from 51,603 in 2002, and employees earned $1.7 billion. Of these employees, 31,758 worked in production, putting in more than 63 million hours to earn total wages of $1 billion.

The hand and edge tool manufacturing industry provides basic hand tools for both domestic and professional use. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, industry shipments climbed from $5.95 billion in 1997 to $6.44 billion in 2000 before falling to $5.9 billion in 2001 and $5.45 billion in 2005. Mechanics' hand service tools accounted for 37 percent of total industry shipments. Dies and interchangeable cutting tools for machines and power-driven hand tools account for 14 percent of shipments; precision measuring tools, such as inspection and quality control devices, 14 percent; and hand-operated edge tools, 8 percent.

Background and Development

Traditionally, production in this industry was centered in New England, paralleling the development of SIC 3421: Cutlery. In the early 1900s, Massachusetts and Connecticut commanded 47 percent of the hand and edge tool and cutlery industries. The shift toward mass production techniques and away from a reliance on skilled craftsmen, however, resulted in the increasing movement of the hand and edge tool industry to the heartland states. The industry tended to follow the source of inexpensive materials and markets, differentiating it from cutlery by its marked westward migration. In the early years of the first decade of the 2000s, the four main states producing hand and edge tools were Ohio, Minnesota, Connecticut, and South Carolina.
Employment figures for the early years of the first decade of the twenty-first century showed a decrease in employment in the larger hand tools and saw the blade manufacturing industry, dropping from 51,516 workers in 2002 to 42,581 in 2005. Payroll likewise decreased, falling from nearly $1.9 billion in 2002 to $1.75 billion in 2005.

According to industry statistics, there were an estimated 2,318 manufacturers of simple, edged hand-tools, such as files, axes, chisels, prying bars, rulers, soldering irons, tongs, rakes, and cutters for metalworking, woodworking, and general maintenance, with industry-wide employment of 31,118 and product shipments of $1.63 billion. States with the highest concentration of industry establishments were, in descending order, California, Florida, New York, Texas, and Illinois.

While the industry was highly fragmented in 2008, the hand and edge tools sector captured 26.5 percent of market share with a value of $897.2 million and a total of 614 firms employing 13,657 workers. In terms of market share, the largest sector comprised the 757 manufacturers of jewelers' hand tools that held 32.7 percent of market share with a value of $84.3 million. Manufacturing of carpenters' hand tools (except saws) accounted for 9.3 percent of market share with 1,111 employees and product shipments totaling $48.4 million. A total of 20 firms were engaged in manufacturing $34.1 million in shipped hammers. Other significant industry sectors in 2008 included the manufacturers of garden and farm tools, including shovels, valued at $75.7 million; plumbers' hand tools with $138.2 million in shipments; manufacturers of knives (agricultural or industrial) with $55.9 million in sales; mechanics' hand tools, which generated $56.6 million; masons' cutting dies (except metal cutting) with $27.5 million; and manufacturers of hand tools with $26.5 million in products.

Current Conditions

The industry reported an estimated 1,723 establishments in 2010, a decline from 2,318 reported in 2008. Shipment values, however, increased to nearly $3.3 billion from $1.63 billion in 2008. The industry employed 28,903 workers, a significant decrease from the 31,118 workers employed in 2008. On average, each establishment employed 17 workers who generated about $2 million in revenues. California, Florida, Maryland, Wisconsin, and Illinois were responsible for the bulk of shipments totaling $1.59 billion.

Manufacturers in the hand and edge tools sector comprised 32 percent of market share with revenues that exceeded $1.9 billion in 2010. Market share for manufacturers of jewelers' hand tools fell to 9.9 percent from 32.7 percent reported in 2008, and sales dropped to $51 million in 2010 from $84.3 million in 2008. Other top performing industry sectors were manufacturers of mechanics' hand tools with shipments valued at $314 million, followed by manufacturers of wrenches with sales that reached $147.4 million. Shipments of plumbers' hand tools totaled $169.6 million; carpenters's hand tools, except saws, levels, chisels, etc., garnered $114.7 million; and garden and farm tools added $111.6 million.

At the end of the first decade of the 2000s, merger activity was abundant. Industry leaders Stanley Works and Black & Decker announced plans to merge. Black & Decker President and CEO Nolan Archibald made it clear the merger had nothing to do with the economic crisis, but was a result of "cost synergies" that would total about $350 million, according to Remodeling in November 2009. On March 12, 2010, the merger became official, and the new company became known as Stanley Black & Decker. The combined companies reported revenues of $8.4 billion in 2010 with 36,700 employees. In addition, on June 30, 2011, Danaher completed the merger of Djanel Acquisition Corp. with Beckman Coulter Inc., with Beckman Coulter becoming a wholly owned subsidiary of Danaher. Danaher reported revenues of $12.8 billion in 2010 with 48,000 employees. Although the company operated in an estimated 50 countries, over half of its revenues were generated in the United States.

Industry Leaders

Washington, D.C.-based Danaher Corp. led the industry with 2005 sales of more than $7.9 billion. Houston, Texas-based Cooper Industries Ltd. followed with 2005 sales of $4.7 billion. Rounding out the top three industry leaders was Stanley Works of New Britain, Connecticut, with more than $839 million in 2005 sales generated by 13,500 employees. Using stereolithographic models from CAD drawings and infrared photography, Stanley had introduced a new line of tools with ergonomically redesigned handles in mid-1999.

Other industry leaders included SPX Corp. of Charlotte, North Carolina, with sales of $5 billion and 22,200 employees in 2003; Snap-On Inc. of Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin, with 2003 sales of $2.2 billion and 12,400 workers; and Toro Co. of Bloomington, Minnesota, with 2003 sales of $1.4 billion and 4,944 workers.

Danaher Corp. revenues climbed from $9.59 billion in 2006 to $12.69 billion in 2008, with 50,300 employees. Cooper Industries Ltd. posted revenues of $6.52 million in 2008 with 31,200 employees. Stanley Works reported revenues of $4.01 billion in 2006 that increased to $4.42 billion in 2008 with 18,225 employees. SPX Corp. posted revenues of $5.85 billion in 2008 and employed 17,800 workers, while Snap-On Inc. relocated to Kenosha, Wisconsin, where they generated revenues of $2.85 billion in 2008 with 11,500 workers. Toro Co. reported $1.87 billion in revenues and 5,133 employees.

Cooper Industries Ltd. reported $5.06 billion in revenues with 24,795 employees. SPX Corp. posted revenues of $4.88 billion in 2010 with 15,500 employees. The company operated in more than 35 countries, generating 55 percent of its revenues offshore. Snap-On Inc. reported revenues totaling $2.68 billion in 2010 and 11,300 employees. Moreover, in 2011, the Snap-on brand outperformed its competition for the sixth consecutive year in the hand tools category, according to the annual Frost & Sullivan Survey. The Snap-on brand was chosen by 75 percent of service technicians compared to other brands. Toro Co. generated $1.69 billion in 2010 with 4,607 employees.

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News and information about Hand and Edge Tools, Except Machine Tools and Handsaws

Research and Markets Adds Report: 'Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing Industry in the U.S. and its International Trade [2010 Year-End Edition]'
Manufacturing Close-Up; January 11, 2011; 700+ words
...Cutlery (hedge shears and trimmers, tinners snips, and similar nonelectric hand tools); 3423 - Hand and Edge Tools, Except Machine Tools and Handsaws; 3523 - Farm Machinery and Equipment (hand hair clippers for animals); 3524 - Lawn and Garden...
Research and Markets Adds Report: Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing Industry in the U.S. and its International Trade - The Updated Q3 2009 Edition
Manufacturing Close-Up; October 3, 2009; 700+ words
...Cutlery (hedge shears and trimmers, tinners snips, and similar nonelectric hand tools); 3423 - Hand and Edge Tools, Except Machine Tools and Handsaws; 3523 - Farm Machinery and Equipment (hand hair clippers for animals); 3524 - Lawn and Garden...
Research and Markets Adds Report: Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing Industry in the U.S. and its International Trade - The Updated Q3 2009 Edition.(Report)
Manufacturing Close-Up; October 3, 2009; 700+ words
...Cutlery (hedge shears and trimmers, tinners snips, and similar nonelectric hand tools); 3423 - Hand and Edge Tools, Except Machine Tools and Handsaws; 3523 - Farm Machinery and Equipment (hand hair clippers for animals); 3524 - Lawn and Garden...
Research and Markets Offers Report: Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing Industry in the U.S. and its International Trade - The Updated Q3 2009 Edition.(Report)
Professional Services Close-Up; October 2, 2009; 700+ words
...Cutlery (hedge shears and trimmers, tinners snips, and similar nonelectric hand tools); 3423 - Hand and Edge Tools, Except Machine Tools and Handsaws; 3523 - Farm Machinery and Equipment (hand hair clippers for animals); 3524 - Lawn and Garden...
Research and Markets Adds Report: 'Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing Industry in the U.S. and its International Trade [2010 Year-End Edition]'
Manufacturing Close-Up; January 11, 2011; 700+ words
...new report "Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing...Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing...hand and edge tools (except saws). This...Tools, Except Machine Tools and Handsaws; 3523 - Farm...3545 - Cutting Tools, ...
Research and Markets Adds Report: Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing Industry in the U.S. and its International Trade - The Updated Q3 2009 Edition
Manufacturing Close-Up; October 3, 2009; 700+ words
...new report "Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing...Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing...hand and edge tools (except saws). This...Tools, Except Machine Tools and Handsaws; 3523 - Farm...3545 - Cutting Tools, ...
Research and Markets Adds Report: Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing Industry in the U.S. and its International Trade - The Updated Q3 2009 Edition.(Report)
Manufacturing Close-Up; October 3, 2009; 700+ words
...new report "Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing...Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing...hand and edge tools (except saws). This...Tools, Except Machine Tools and Handsaws; 3523 - Farm...3545 - Cutting Tools, ...
Research and Markets Offers Report: Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing Industry in the U.S. and its International Trade - The Updated Q3 2009 Edition.(Report)
Professional Services Close-Up; October 2, 2009; 700+ words
...new report "Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing...Hand and Edge Tool Manufacturing...hand and edge tools (except saws). This...Tools, Except Machine Tools and Handsaws; 3523 - Farm...3545 - Cutting Tools, ...

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