This according to a recent report from the New York Times:
“Even though the U.S. is more competitive globally, manufacturing doesn’t give you the kind of direct job creation it did in years past,” said Joseph G. Carson, director of global economic research at AllianceBernstein, a Wall Street investment firm. “At the end of the day you still want a strong manufacturing base, but there aren’t as many people on the factory floor.”
Indeed, while the sector has added 500,000 jobs since the recession ended and the value of what the nation’s factories churn out is close to a high, there are nonetheless two million fewer manufacturing workers today than in 2007. Ever since the early 1960s, the share of jobs in manufacturing has been on a nearly uninterrupted downward slope, now accounting for less than 9 percent of all employment in the United States.
The full story is here. Of course, the reason the jobs are so scarce is that productivity has increased so dramatically in manufacturing. That in turn means that manufacturing wages should be growing by leaps and bounds. But, for some reason, they’re not. A report last year by the Chicago Federal Reserve showed that, from 1990 to 2007 the growth in manufacturing wages trailed behind nonmanufacturing. Hmmm. . . .