If a man isn't willing to take some risk for his opinions, either his opinions are no good or he's no good.
Ezra Pound, poet
For this last column of 2018, I want to look back at some of my forecasts from a year ago and then compare these forecasts to what actually happened during the past year. My hope is to identify both the hits and the misses and then determine how this information can be useful in forecasting the growth rates for important end markets and economic indicators for the plastics industry in 2019.
I think this type of review, formal or informal, is a common practice among owners and managers in a competitive marketplace. And if you have been in business long enough, then you know this can be a humbling exercise. What is less common is taking the risk of sharing the results of this year-end ritual in a column in a prominent magazine. So I hope Ezra Pound is right.
Since 2018 is not yet officially over, we are still a few weeks away from having all the pertinent data for this year. Therefore, some of the numbers on the table are estimates and subject to revision. But barring anything extreme between now and New Year's, I think we have a pretty good idea about how the large indicators should perform.