July 23, 2001

Worldwide Slowdown Hurts 3M

3M's second quarter earnings were as disappointing as the company had expected. That doesn't say much for the company.

But it speaks volumes for the state of the global economy. 3M confirmed that the current economic slowdown in the US has spread to other parts of the globe, and the company's profits took a beating as a result.

More importantly, the US and international economic situations are not going to get any better in the months ahead. In the US, the economic reports keep getting cloudier -- consumer spending has dropped off considerably, manufacturing remains in a recession, and companies continue to lay off workers. Internationally, all of Europe is feeling the affects of the US economic troubles, and economies around the world are beginning to sputter as well. Allthis, in turn, will reinforce the slowdown at home, making it harder for the US to pull out of its doldrums.

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