THE paramount question in the wind today is—“What effect will the price ceiling have upon Industry?”
We can only answer to what is happening in the Used Machinery Field and, as previously pointed out, we were concerned about the effect it would have upon the supply of machinery much needed for primary defense jobs.
Priorities have been established on all new machine tools, but there is no priority on the machine which a user has in his possession. While appeals have been repeatedly made to machine tool users to release their idle or part-time tools, there have been few machines offered to the dealers whose facilities are geared to the reallocation of machinery.
With the O.P.M. working night and day, trying to supply the needs of Defense Contractors, it behooves every plant operator to make a survey of every metal-working tool on hand, and see what can be spared for defense jobs.
We have reports of a few manufacturers making such surveys, but we doubt if many have dug very deeply until some dealer walked in and offered more than the book value for a tool in his inventory.
Of course, everyone tries to buy at the lowest possible figure, and dealers in used machinery are neither profiteers nor hijackers, occasionally and as erroneously labeled. Today a manufacturer with surplus machines can get the cooperation of one, or a dozen dealers, to make him an offer, or aid him in determining a fair value on them.
The dealers in this country are more cognizant of the gravity of this emergency than is ordinarily assumed. The responsibility of supplying surplus machinery has been laid on his doorstep. He is accepting it with the spirit that all real Americans do when faced with such an important assignment.