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Thursday, May 23, 2013

Manufacturing in the News

The cover story on Time Magazine for the April 12, 2013 issue was an article titled "Made in the USA- Manufacturing is back but where are the jobs?". There has been a lot of press lately on the state of manufacturing in America.  Here are a few articles that speak to manufacturing jobs and bringing manufacturing back to America from overseas.  

"How 'Made in the USA' is Making a Comeback"
The number of manufacturing jobs in America has been increasing over the last couple of years. Companies that once only produced goods overseas are starting to bring production back to the US. The price of oil in other countries has increased recently, and workers in India and China have fought for and won higher wages. These factors make building factories in America more appealing because in comparison to outsourcing production, keeping production back home is cheaper. This steady increase in jobs due to American manufacturing does not seem to be slowing down, though they do require more education than factory jobs of the past needed. To read more from this Time Magazine article, click here.

Manufacturing Is Going (to New) Places: And What That Means About Jobs
 Manufacturing jobs are changing. Manufacturing is now considered part of the “knowledge economy” because there is a need for highly educated, skilled workers. Since many factories are becoming more and more automated, the repetitive assembly positions that used to give low-skilled workers jobs are being filled by machines. This emphasizes the need to continue educating the workforce and providing training. Schools are starting to work in conjunction with future employers to create educational programs that get students ready for employment right out of high school. To see the complete article on the Huffington Post, click here.

"Is U.S. manufacturing making a comeback or is it just hype?"
Wonkblog's article talks about how American companies are "reshoring" and bringing production back to the US from overseas. Now because of the low natural gas prices in the US and rising wages in countries like China and India where companies used to outsource production. Economists are not sure if the increase in manufacturing jobs in America is going to keep rising or if it is just a short blip in the business cycle. However, if businesses keep bringing production back home, and other countries keep moving their production to the US, then the number of jobs should increase steadily. This is just the beginning, but along with government programs and the merging of private firms, degree programs, and research labs, there will be a significantly larger number of jobs in America. To read the full article, click here.

What do you think about this trend in manufacturing?  Is there work coming back from overseas in the markets you serve?  

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