ELKHART

COUNTY, IND.

Snohomish County, Wash.

8,600 jobs

7,400 jobs

Change in manufacturing jobs since 2008

Gained

Lost

A circle represents a county

Dallas

County, Tex.

Charleston COUNTY, S.C

Los Angeles

County, Calif.

4,500 jobs

75,649 jobs

27,543 jobs

Snohomish County, Wash.

ELKHART COUNTY, IND.

8,600 job

7,400 jobs

Boeing and related aerospace firms have driven the increase since 2008

Change in manufacturing jobs since 2008

Jobs in this so-called RV capital of the world rebounded after the Great Recession

JOBS LOST

JOBS GAINED

+25k

+10k

-25k

-10k

A circle represents a county

Wash.

Maine

Mont.

N.D.

Vt.

Minn.

Ore.

N.H.

Idaho

N.Y.

Wis.

Mass.

S.D.

Mich.

Wyo.

Conn.

R.I.

Pa.

Iowa

Neb.

N.J.

Nev.

Md.

Ohio

Del.

Ind.

Ill.

Utah

Calif.

Colo.

W.Va.

Va.

Mo.

Kan.

Ky.

N.C.

Tenn.

Ariz.

Okla.

N.M.

Ark.

S.C.

Ga.

Miss.

Ala.

Tex.

La.

Fla.

LOS ANGELES

COUNTY, CALIF.

DALLAS

COUNTY, TEX.

CHARLESTON COUNTY, S.C.

75,649 jobs

27,543 jobs

4,500 jobs

Large urban areas saw the largest losses,

but manufacturing jobs make up a smaller

slice of all jobs

Boeing started building 787s in 2011

Change in manufacturing jobs since 2008

Snohomish County, Wash.

8,600 jobs

JOBS LOST

JOBS GAINED

Boeing and related aerospace firms have driven the increase since 2008

–25k

–10k

+10k

+25k

ELKHART COUNTY, IND.

7,400 jobs

A circle represents a county

Jobs in this so-called RV capital of the world rebounded after the Great Recession

Wash.

Maine

Mont.

N.D.

Minn.

Vt.

Ore.

N.H.

Idaho

Wis.

N.Y.

Mass.

S.D.

R.I.

Mich.

Conn.

Wyo.

Iowa

Pa.

Neb.

N.J.

Nev.

Ohio

Md.

Ind.

Del.

Ill.

Utah

W.Va.

Colo.

Calif.

Va.

Kan.

Mo.

Ky.

N.C.

Tenn.

Okla.

Ariz.

Ark.

N.M.

S.C.

Ga.

Ala.

Miss.

CHARLESTON

COUNTY, S.C.

4,500 jobs

La.

Tex.

Boeing started building 787s in 2011

LOS ANGELES

COUNTY, CALIF.

DALLAS

COUNTY, TEX.

75,649 jobs

27,543 jobs

Fla.

Large urban areas saw the largest losses, but manufacturing jobs make up a smaller slice of all jobs

TROUP COUNTY, GA.

4,500 jobs

A new Kia auto plant added

thousands of jobs

Change in manufacturing jobs since 2008

JOBS LOST

JOBS GAINED

SNOHOMISH COUNTY, WASH.

8,600 jobs

Boeing and related aerospace firms

have driven the increase since 2008

–25k

–10k

+10k

+25k

A circle represents a county

Wash.

ELKHART COUNTY, IND.

N.D.

7,400 jobs

Maine

Mont.

Jobs in this so-called RV capital of the world rebounded after the Great Recession

Vt.

Minn.

Ore.

N.H.

Idaho

Wis.

S.D.

Mass.

N.Y.

R.I.

Mich.

Conn.

Wyo.

Pa.

Iowa

Neb.

N.J.

Nev.

Ohio

Md.

Ind.

Del.

Ill.

Utah

Calif.

Colo.

W.Va.

Va.

Kan.

JEFFERSON

COUNTY, KY.

Mo.

Ky.

5,200 jobs

Appliance and auto manufacturers are major employers

N.C.

Tenn.

Okla.

Ariz.

Ark.

S.C.

N.M.

CHARLESTON

COUNTY, S.C.

Ga.

Ala.

4,500 jobs

Miss.

Boeing started building

787s in 2011

Tex.

La.

LOS ANGELES

COUNTY, CALIF.

DALLAS

COUNTY, TEX.

75,649 jobs

27,543 jobs

Large urban areas saw the largest losses,

but manufacturing jobs make up a smaller

slice of all jobs

Fla.

TROUP COUNTY, GA.

4,500 jobs

A new Kia auto plant added

thousands of jobs

By Ted Mellnik and Chris Alcantara
Dec. 14, 2016

The nation shed manufacturing jobs at a steady pace over most of the last quarter century. A combination of trade deals, automation and economic recessions sent the number of manufacturing jobs plummeting, with 6 million jobs being lost by 2011.

But since then, about half a million jobs have been regained.

They’re not the same jobs that left. They're not coming back everywhere, or even in the same places where jobs were lost. The map of where products are made in this country is being redrawn.

[ He ‘lied his a– off': Carrier union leader on Trump’s big deal]

The nation's biggest cities show the biggest manufacturing job losses.

Across the Northeast and in urban centers like Los Angeles and Dallas, only one county in seven has seen factory jobs increase since 2011. Manufacturing does tend to account for a relatively small share of big city jobs, typically about 10 percent or less.

Across the rest of the more than 2,600 counties with factory jobs, manufacturing employment grew in more than one-third. There are more than 330 counties where factory jobs are up more than 20 percent since 2008.

Not all manufacturing jobs are created equal

Some jobs are unlikely to come back, no matter what.

Jobs in the knitting and cut-and-sew operations of clothing manufacturers, for example, amount to only one-seventh of 1990's workforce. For the textile mills that make fiber and fabrics, it's one-fourth.

Manufacturing jobs are declining in ...

Computer and electronic machinery

100%

Job loss

80

All manufacturing sectors

69%

60

55%

40

20

2008-2015

0

1990

2015

Apparel

100%

Job loss

80

All manufacturing sectors

69%

60

40

20

14%

2008-2015

0

1990

2015

Manufacturing jobs are declining in ...

Computer and electronic machinery

Apparel

100%

100%

Job loss

Job loss

80

80

All manufacturing sectors

All manufacturing sectors

69%

69%

60

60

55%

40

40

20

20

14%

2008-2015

2008-2015

0

0

1990

2015

1990

2015

Mark Muro, the director of policy at the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program, said the prospects of a comeback for simple products and those with little new or innovative content are not strong.

"The more lower-end, labor-intensive and commodified, the less chance it's going well," he said.

But while shirts, pants and other products can be made abroad, some goods remain more economical to produce locally.

Manufacturing jobs are steady in ...

Beverage and Tobacco products

99%

100%

Job loss

80

All manufacturing sectors

69%

60

40

20

2008-2015

0

1990

2015

Food products

99%

100%

Job loss

80

All manufacturing sectors

69%

60

40

20

2008-2015

0

1990

2015

Manufacturing jobs are steady in ...

Food products

Beverage and Tobacco products

99%

100%

99%

100%

Job loss

Job loss

80

80

All manufacturing sectors

All manufacturing sectors

69%

69%

60

60

40

40

20

20

2008-2015

2008-2015

0

0

1990

2015

1990

2015

Food manufacturing, which includes bakeries and confectioneries, is an exception among manufacturers: Mexico won’t be making America's doughnuts anytime soon.

Muro said the best prospects for new manufacturing jobs are in sectors where products are complicated, often large and include new content that requires continuing research and development.

Manufacturing jobs are rebounding in ...

Transportation equipment

100%

Job loss

80

74%

All manufacturing sectors

69%

60

40

20

2008-2015

0

1990

2015

Machinery

100%

Job loss

80

79%

All manufacturing sectors

69%

60

40

20

2008-2015

0

1990

2015

Manufacturing jobs are rebounding in ...

Transportation equipment

Machinery

100%

100%

Job loss

Job loss

80

80

79%

74%

All manufacturing sectors

All manufacturing sectors

69%

69%

60

60

40

40

20

20

2008-2015

2008-2015

0

0

1990

2015

1990

2015

"U.S. policy should be focusing on the high-value manufacturing that actually has a chance to survive and grow and pay people a good wage," Muro said.

The poster child for this so-called advanced manufacturing is transportation, especially the building of cars, trucks and aircraft.

[ Why Trump gets more hype out of 1,000 jobs than Obama does out of 16 million]

Although still below 1990 employment, transportation manufacturing jobs have rebounded since 2011, and in four years, the industry regained about a third of the jobs lost over the previous two decades.

The story of South Carolina's transition from old to advanced manufacturing is told through its quiet redbrick textile mills — and its bustling auto and aerospace factories.

Four in 10 S.C. manufacturing workers could be found in textile and apparel plants back in 1990. But as that workforce withered under the effects of NAFTA, WTO, automation and other factors, the state gained a BMW auto plant in Spartanburg in 1994.

Then in 2007, Boeing arrived with a 787 Dreamliner factory near Charleston. Nearby, Volvo is building a plant that, when completed, will make 100,000 cars a year.

"We are definitely seeing manufacturing jobs come back to the U.S.," said Joey Von Nessen, a University of South Carolina economist.

But there is a key difference.

"The type of jobs is very different than those lost in the great recession," he added.

[ Donald Trump’s ‘dumb market’ position on trade breaks with decades of Republican views]

Now, twice as many people work in transportation as in textiles and apparel, making it South Carolina's largest manufacturing sector.

There are similar stories across the country: Newport News, Va., with both auto parts plants and shipyards building two nuclear submarines, added 2,500 manufacturing jobs. Wayne County, Mich., home to suburban Detroit auto plants, added 5,100 jobs.

Counties with manufacturing jobs above the national average in 2015

1.1x to 2x

2x to 3x

More than 3x

SNOHOMISH

COUNTY, WASH.

ELKHART

COUNTY, IND.

ORANGE

COUNTY, CALIF.

Counties with manufacturing jobs above the national average in 2015

2x to 3x

1.1x to 2x

More than 3x

SNOHOMISH

COUNTY, WASH.

Wash.

ELKHART COUNTY, IND.

Mont.

Maine

N.D.

Vt.

Minn.

Ore.

N.H.

Idaho

Wis.

S.D.

Mass.

N.Y.

Mich.

Wyo.

Conn.

R.I.

Iowa

Pa.

N.J.

Neb.

Nev.

Ohio

Md.

Ind.

Ill.

Del.

Utah

Calif.

Colo.

W.Va.

Va.

Kan.

Mo.

Ky.

N.C.

Tenn.

Okla.

Ariz.

Ark.

S.C.

N.M.

Ga.

Ala.

Miss.

La.

Tex.

Orange county, Calif.

Fla.

TROUP COUNTY, GA.

Counties with manufacturing jobs above the national average in 2015

SNOHOMISH COUNTY, WASH.

1.1x to 2x

2x to 3x

More than 3x

Wash.

Mont.

Maine

ELKHART COUNTY, IND.

N.D.

Vt.

Minn.

Ore.

N.H.

Idaho

Wis.

N.Y.

S.D.

Mass.

R.I.

Mich.

Conn.

Wyo.

Pa.

Iowa

N.J.

Neb.

Nev.

Ohio

Md.

Ind.

Ill.

Del.

Utah

Calif.

Colo.

W.Va.

Va.

Kan.

Mo.

Ky.

N.C.

Tenn.

Okla.

Ariz.

Ark.

N.M.

S.C.

Ga.

Ala.

Miss.

Tex.

La.

ORANGE COUNTY, CALIF.

Fla.

TROUP COUNTY, GA.

Counties with manufacturing jobs above the national average in 2015

SNOHOMISH COUNTY, WASH.

1.1x to 2x

2x to 3x

More than 3x

Wash.

ELKHART COUNTY, IND.

Mont.

Maine

N.D.

Vt.

Minn.

Ore.

N.H.

Idaho

Wis.

Mass.

S.D.

N.Y.

R.I.

Mich.

Conn.

Wyo.

Iowa

Pa.

N.J.

Neb.

Nev.

Ohio

Md.

Ind.

Ill.

Del.

Utah

Calif.

Colo.

W.Va.

Va.

Kan.

Mo.

Ky.

N.C.

Tenn.

Okla.

Ariz.

Ark.

S.C.

N.M.

Ga.

Ala.

Miss.

La.

Tex.

ORANGE COUNTY, CALIF.

Fla.

TROUP COUNTY, GA.

The new manufacturing jobs are moving to areas outside of big cities that already have, or had, factories.

Those tend to have the basic infrastructure — like transportation, power and other resources — needed by factories already in place.

They also often have factory-friendly public officials, as well as experienced manufacturing workers, who are valued even if their specific skills need updating.  

What this all means moving forward

Any significant manufacturing comeback would change a long and significant decline in the jobs that build things — and made America into a 20th century world power. Manufacturing powered the United States’ growth as it evolved from a farm-based economy into an industrial giant.

Factory jobs have headed mostly down since 1980. Every recession since has ratcheted down, as manufacturing employment failed to rebound to pre-recession levels and some jobs in vulnerable sectors didn't return.

Manufacturing jobs since 1939, by month

Jobs data as of October 2016. September and October 2016 numbers are preliminary.

Recessions

25 million jobs

20

15

12M

10

9M

5

0

1939

2016

Manufacturing jobs since 1939, by month

Jobs data as of October 2016. September and October 2016 numbers are preliminary.

Recessions

25 million jobs

20

15

12M

10

9M

5

0

1939

‘50

‘60

‘70

‘80

‘90

2000

‘10

‘16

With new, advanced manufacturing jobs arising in pocket areas nationwide, a new kind of manufacturing worker, one with a college degree as well as advanced technical skills, is needed.

Communities that have landed these jobs often credit local job training programs, in partnership with community colleges and other schools, with helping build worker skills.

Peter Morici, a University of Maryland business professor, economist and conservative commentator, said more than 2 million jobs could return to the country if there are changes in trade policy, regulatory burdens and taxes.

However, those who want the jobs will have to compete for them.

“Workers don’t have a right to these jobs,” he said. “They have to train themselves. They have to earn these jobs by being productive.”

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