10/14/2019

Where U.S. Manufacturing Is Thriving In 2018

Yet, manufacturing’s contributions to the economy are far out of proportion to its shrinking share of employment. In 2013, the manufacturing sector employed 12 million workers, but generated an additional 17.1 million indirect jobs. It has the largest multiplier of any economic sector: each dollar’s worth of manufactured goods generates $1.40 in output from other sectors of the economy. Perhaps most important may be the higher wages it provides for blue-collar workers. According to the latest BLS data, goods-producing industries pays $56,799 a year on average during the latest period in our rankings—much higher than other working-class fields like health care and education (averaging $45,676 annually) and leisure and hospitality ($20,879).

. . . A broad array of places across the U.S. are benefiting, ranging from the industrial Midwest to the Sun Belt to even California, a state that has long been bleeding industrial jobs but is lately showing some signs of resurgence. Oakland-Hayward-Berkeley ranks second on our list of the large metropolitan areas that have added the most industrial jobs over the past decade — its factory job count has jumped 22% since 2012, as the red-hot tech sector has fueled a manufacturing surge in the Bay Area. Meanwhile the San Diego-Carlsbad area ranks 10th.

. . . Only three U.S. metro areas still have more than 200,000 manufacturing jobs and none of them show signs of participating in the reindustrialization trend. Los Angeles-Glendale-Long Beach, with 348,000 manufacturing jobs, is still the largest industrial center in the nation, but its famously diversified economy, once a model, is in a need of a major retrofit. The area has lost an estimated 20% of its manufacturing jobs in the past decade, many in the aerospace and garment sectors, and 1.9% last year, earning it 68th place in our ranking.

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