Trade Statistics Home
Manufacturing Biweekly Update
January 20, 2012 [past updates]
| Wage Rates
US manufacturing sector keeps growing
America's manufacturing industry expanded for the tenth quarter in succession in the final three months of last year, underlining the resilience of a key sector of the economy. Industrial production rose 0.4pc in December, according to the Federal Reserve, after a 0.3pc drop in November. Last month's rebound helped the sector ensure another quarter of expansion for a sector that has proved a bright spot since the US emerged from recession in mid-2009. "It was a particularly strong month for manufacturers," said Paul Edelstein of IHS Global Insight. "Consumer products bounced back, while demand for business equipment remained robust." Economists were particularly encouraged because December's growth was spread across a number of industries, and came at a time when manufacturers' stockpiles were already low.
(The Telegraph |January 19, 2012)
U.S. losing high-tech manufacturing jobs to Asia
The United States lost more than a quarter of its high-tech manufacturing jobs during the past decade as U.S.-based multinational companies placed a growing percentage of their research-and-development operations overseas, the National Science Board reported Tuesday. The rapid expansion of science and engineering capabilities in China and its neighbors pose a more formidable economic challenge to the United States, according to the group, with Asia rapidly boosting the number of engineering doctorates it produces and research dollars it spends. The report comes as the Obama administration is seeking to make U.S. manufacturing more competitive through engineering and innovation. In June, it announced its Advanced Manufacturing Partnership and sank $500 million into the effort.
(Washington Post| January 17, 2012)
Back to Top
U.S. Manufacturing Key Facts
Manufacturing Wage Rates
- In December 2011, average hourly earnings in manufacturing were $19.05 (preliminary), up 0.4 percent from previous month, and up 1.3 percent from December 2010’s $18.80.
(BLS/DOL Employment data from “The Employment Situation, USDL 12-0012,” released January 6, 2012; next release is February 3, 2012)
Manufacturing Wage Rates (Quarterly, Yearly)
- In the third-quarter of 2011, hourly compensation from previous quarter, annual rate (revised) was down -0.4 percent in total manufacturing, up 0.2 percent in durable manufacturing and down -1.3 percent in nondurable manufacturing.
- In the third-quarter of 2011, hourly compensation of all manufacturing workers increased 0.9 percent, compared to a 1.4 percent increase during the third-quarter of 2010. Real hourly compensation in the total manufacturing sector decreased -2.7 percent in the third-quarter of 2011, compared to 0.2 percent increase in the third-quarter of 2010.
(BLS/DOL Productivity data from “Productivity and Costs, Third Quarter 2011, Revised” USDL 11-1690, released November 30, 2011; next release is February 2, 2011)
Back to Top
- In the third quarter of 2011, manufacturing profits increased 7.32 percent, or $18.3 billion, to $268.2 billion from $249.9 billion in the first quarter. Compared with third quarter profits of 2010, manufacturing profits were up $41.0 billion in the third quarter of 2011.
- Third quarter 2011 profits for all non-financial industries (manufacturing being a subcategory) increased $22 billion from the second quarter of 2011 to $967.9 billion.
(BEA/DOC GDP data from “Gross Domestic Product, BEA 11-63,” released December 22, 2011; next release is March 29, 2011)
Back to Top
- In December 2011, manufacturing employment went up, with an increase of 23,000 jobs.
- In December, durable goods manufacturing gained 23,000 jobs with increases in transportation equipment (8,600), fabricated metal products (6,000), machinery (5,300), miscellaneous manufacturing (1,700), electrical equipment and appliances (1,400), wood products (900), nonmetallic mineral products (300), and computer and electronic products (200). However, job loss occurred in furniture and related products (-1,400), and primary metals (-100).
- In December, there was no change of employment in nondurable goods manufacturing sector. However, job loss occurred in petroleum and coal products (-2,300),plastics and rubber products (-1,400), textile product mills (-900), beverages and tobacco products (-800), apparel (-500). Job gains occurred in paper and paper products (1,700), textile mills (1,500), printing and related support activities (1,400), chemicals (1,000), food manufacturing (300), and leather and allied products (100).
- The manufacturing employment of 11.8 million workers represents 8.9 percent of total non-farm employment.
(BLS/DOL Employment data from “The Employment Situation, USDL-11-0012,” released January 6, 2011; next release is February 3, 2011)
Back to Top
Manufacturing Production UPDATED
- In December 2011, manufacturing production was up 0.9 percent from previous month and was 3.7 percent above its year-earlier level.
- Production of durable goods was up 0.9 percent from previous month. The durable industries that registered increases in output included wood products (4.2 percent), primary metal (3.2 percent), machinery (2.1 percent), miscellaneous (1.2 percent), fabricated metal products (1.1 percent), computer and electronic products (1.0 percent), and motor vehicles and parts (0.6 percent). The durable industries that registered decreases in output included aerospace and miscellaneous transportation equipment (-1.2 percent), nonmetallic mineral products (-0.8 percent), furniture and related products (-0.8 percent), and electrical equip., appliances, and components (-0.2 percent).
- Production of nondurable goods was up 0.8 percent from the previous month. The nondurable manufacturing industries that registered increases in output included plastics and rubber products (1.6 percent), chemicals (1.2 percent), petroleum and coal products (1.1 percent),textile and product mills (1.0 percent), food, beverage, and tobacco products (0.6 percent), and printing and support (0.5 percent). The nondurable industries that registered decreases in output included apparel and leather (-0.5 percent), and paper (-1.0 percent).
- Other manufacturing industries (non-NAICS) was up (2.3 percent).
(Federal Reserve Statistical data from “Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization, G17 (419),” released January 18, 2012; next release is February 15, 2012)
Back to Top
Manufacturing Capacity Utilization UPDATED
- In December 2011, manufacturing industries (NAICS based) operated at 76.4 percent of capacity, 2.4 percentage points below their 1972-2010 average of 78.8 percent, and 0.6 percentage points above their revised capacity utilization level in November 2011.
- In December 2011, durable manufacturing, capacity utilization operated at 75.0 percent capacity, up 0.6 points from previous month. Increased capacity utilization was registered in wood products (2.8 points), primary metals (2.5 points), machinery (1.6 points), fabricated metal products (1.0 points), miscellaneous (0.7 points), motor vehicles and parts (0.3 points), and computer and electronic products (0.2 points). Decreased capacity utilization was registered in aerospace and miscellaneous transportation equipment (-1 points), furniture and related products (-0.5 points), and nonmetallic mineral products (-0.3 points). There was no change of capacity utilization in electrical equip., appliances, and components.
- In November 2011, non-durable manufacturing, capacity utilization operated 78.0 percent capacity, up 0.6 from previous month. Increased capacity utilization was registered in plastics and rubber products (1.4 points), petroleum and coal products (1.0 points), chemicals (0.9 points), textile and product mills (0.8 points), printing and support (0.4 points), and food, beverage, and tobacco products (0.3 points). Decreased capacity utilization was registered in paper (-0.7 points), and apparel and leather (-0.3 points).
- The index for other manufacturing industries (non-NAICS) increased (1.5 points).
(Federal Reserve Statistical data from “Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization, G17 (419),” released January 18, 2011; next release is February 15, 2011)
Back to Top
- Manufacturing sector productivity was up 5.0 percent in the third-quarter of 2011, as output increased 4.6 percent and hours decreased -0.4 percent. Productivity was up 9.5 percent in the durable goods industries and up 0.1 percent in the nondurable goods industries. Unit labor costs in manufacturing decreased -5.1 percent in the third-quarter of 2011, and decreased -1.9 percent over the last four quarters.
- In durable goods industries, productivity was up 9.5 percent from previous quarter, as output increased 8.3 percent, while hours worked decreased -1.1 percent.
- In nondurable goods industries, productivity was up 0.1 percent from previous quarter, as output increased 1.0 percent, and hours worked increased 0.9 percent.
(BLS/DOL Productivity data from “Productivity and Costs, Third-Quarter 2011, Revised,” USDL 11-1690, released November 30, 2011; next release is February 2, 2011)
Back to Top
Manufacturing Trade UPDATED
- Manufactured goods exports in November were 4.28 percent lower than the previous month. Imports were 1.86 percent lower.
- Year to date November 2011, U.S. manufactured goods exports accounted for 85.5 percent of all U.S. exports of goods, compared with 86.3 percent a year ago.
- The year to date November 2011 trade deficit in manufactured goods of $416.0 billion was $36.1 billion more when compared with $379.9 billion a year ago.
(USA Trade Online, U.S. Census Bureau, released January 13, 2012; Next release is February 10, 2012)
Back to Top
Manufactured Goods Shipments
- Shipments of manufactured durable goods in November, down two of the last three months, decreased $0.7 billion or 0.3 percent to $202.9 billion, revised from the previously published 0.4 percent decrease. This followed a 1.5 percent October increase.
- In November, shipments decreased in transportation equipment (-2.5 percent), computers and electronic products (-2.2 percent), electrical equipment, appliances, and components (-1.2 percent), furniture and related products (-0.6 percent), and wood products (-0.5 percent). However, shipments increased in primary metals (3.9 percent), fabricated metal products (0.7 percent), machinery (0.6 percent), and nonmetallic mineral products (0.3 percent). There was no change in shipment for miscellaneous durable goods.
(Census Bureau/DOC data from “Full Report on Manufacturers’ Shipments, Inventories and Orders (M3-2(11)-11, CB12-01),” January 4, 2012; next release is February 3, 2012)
Back to Top
Manufactured Goods Prices UPDATED
- In December 2011, the Producer Price Index (PPI) for finished goods, except foods and energy, increased by 0.3 percent compared to previous month.
- The index for finished energy goods was down 0.8 percent from previous month.
- A seasonally adjusted increase of price from November to December was registered in residential electric power (+0.9 percent), home heating oil and distillates (+0.7 percent), and liquefied petroleum gas (+0.2 percent). A decrease in price was registered in no. 2 diesel fuel (-3.8 percent), residential gas (-2.8 percent), and gasoline price (-2.3 percent).
(BLS/DOL data from “Producer Price Indexes, USDL 12-0060,” released January 18, 2012; next release is February 16, 2012)
Back to Top
Institute for Supply Management's (ISM) Index
- Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in December for the 29th consecutive month, and the overall economy grew for the 31st consecutive month, say the nation's supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM Report On Business®.
- Manufacturing continued its growth in December as the PMI registered 53.9 percent, an increase of 1.2 percentage points when compared to November's reading of 52.7 percent. A reading above 50 percent indicates that the manufacturing economy is generally expanding; below 50 percent indicates that it is generally contracting.
- The percentage-point changes in the components of the PMI in December were Employment, +3.3 points decrease to 55.1; Production, +3.3 points increase to 59.9; New Orders +0.9 points increase to 57.6; Supplier Deliveries, no change at 49.9; Inventories, -1.2 points decrease to 47.1;
U.S. Industries Reporting Growth in December 2011
- Apparel, Leather & Allied Products
- Printing & Related Support Activities
- Textile Mills
- Petroleum & Coal Products
- Food, Beverage & Tobacco Products
- Computer & Electronic Products
- Primary Metals
- Paper Products
(Institute for Supply Management, data released December 1, 2011; next release is
January 3, 2011)
Back to Top
Director of Office of Trade Industry Information
Manufacturing and Services
International Trade Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce