(textileworld) -- The first quarter
of 2012 was well below the hopes and expectations of many spinners.
"We've been really disappointed in the activity for the first part of the
year," said one Carolinas spinner. "There was a spike earlier in the year Ч a
very brief one Ч that gave us hope that things were turning back around. But it
was very short. Since then, orders have been very slow and very small."
A yarn broker who buys and sells in the United States and Central
America said he has noticed increasing competition from Asian suppliers. "Last
year, companies from China, India, Pakistan and other eastern nations were
caught up in the same raw material shortages that affected us here in the
Western Hemisphere," he said. "As a result, they focused more on making sure
they could meet the needs of their domestic markets. Now, with raw material
prices and availability back to about where they were before the spike, these
companies can be more aggressive in pursuing business over here."