While most of the country is under the sever winter chill, the latest signs we are seeing is pointing to tremendous growth. Factory production increased 0.8 percent in February, its largest advance since last August, after a 0.9 percent January drop, the Federal Reserve said. Economists had expected a gain of 0.2 percent.
The higher then expected retail sales has caused a cascading effect that we can feel now. While the cold weather may put a small damper on this growth the long term forecast seems promising.
Manufacturing share of output: 16.3%
Manufacturing output 2012: $30 billion (22nd highest)
2012 Unemployment rate: 7.3%
Manufacturing share of output: 16.5%
Manufacturing output 2012: $66.2 billion (8th highest)
2012 Unemployment rate: 9.1%
Manufacturing share of output: 16.7%
Manufacturing output 2012: $25.4 billion (25th highest)
2012 Unemployment rate: 5.2%
Manufacturing share of output: 17.1%
Manufacturing output 2012: $87.2 billion (5th highest)
2012 Unemployment rate: 7.2%
Manufacturing share of output: 17.1%
Manufacturing output 2012: $29.75 billion (23rd highest)
2012 Unemployment rate: 8.2%
Manufacturing share of output: 19.1%
Manufacturing output 2012: $49.98 billion (12th highest)
2012 Unemployment rate: 6.9%
4. North Carolina
Manufacturing share of output: 19.4%
Manufacturing output 2012: $88.25 billion (4th highest)
2012 Unemployment rate: 9.5%
Manufacturing share of output: 22.6%
Manufacturing output 2012: $55.10 billion (11th highest)
2012 Unemployment rate: 6.4%
Manufacturing share of output: 27.8%
Manufacturing output 2012: $55.16 billion (10th highest)
2012 Unemployment rate: 8.7%
Manufacturing share of output: 28.2%
Manufacturing output 2012: $84.15 billion (6th highest)
2012 Unemployment rate: 8.4%
Indiana has added manufacturing jobs at one of the fastest rates in the nation over the past several years, with year-over-year growth in manufacturing at or above 3.7% at the end of each of the past three years. Some of this growth came from companies like Honda expanding their factories and adding thousands of jobs, which made headlines in 2011. Developments like these are critical for the economy of the state, which depends on manufacturing more than anywhere else in the nation. In 2012, Indiana had just the nation’s 16th largest economy, while its output from manufacturing exceeded all but a handful of states. In 2010 and 2011, Indiana was one of the leading states in total output from both motor vehicle-related and chemicals manufacturing. Manufacturing of chemical products accounted for 7% of the state’s GDP in 2011, at least partly due to the presence of pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly, which has vendors throughout the state.
As we look back on the first few months of 2013 we are seeing impressive upward trending in manufacturing. The overseas supply chain is more costly then it was just a few years ago. Disruptions in this supply chain impact domestic manufacturing and cause global tensions. Customers also talk to us about product compliance and the increased regulations which when not taken into account have litigious implications.
With so many factors to calculate the cost of producing a product it is easy for company’s to be enamored with low price parts. What is ignored is analyzing the ancillary costs and figuring out the total cost calculation. With major investments in technology and automation the gains in efficiency and quality outweigh the overseas competitors. Looking forward the tickle of new re-shore manufacturing continues but without supporting industries, expertise and ultimately capacity it is going to be difficult to ramp up. Skilled workforce is going to increasingly become more and more sparse as this trend continues without investments in education and training. Luckily we do have a few tricks up our sleeves.
In 2012 40% of manufacturing companies indicated that new projects were won from previously off-shored accounts. With the life expectancy of products shrinking and iterations happening faster it has become easier to work within the local market. The weakening U.S. dollar, increased oil and labor costs strike at the hear the competitive advantage for offshore manufacturing. Local supply chain that is modernized and agile reduces the total cost for your products. With a positive trend, sound business decisions and all factors considered, manufacturing is trending back in the United States.
In 2012 we have had explosive growth, and with that success it is time to move to a more modern facility. In 2013 LaserMan Fabrication is planning on moving to its new facility. We are still staying in Belvidere (actually down the street). The new modern facility is crucial for our ability to service our growing customers. We will be making large capital investments in equipment and infrastructure so that we can do more, do it faster and have even better service then we had before.
You can rarely listen to a news broadcast or read a newspaper without hearing about the reoccurring subject of jobs. Bringing jobs back to the U.S. is a hot button issue that most everyone can agree needs to be priority.
The White House released a report last year stating that the manufacturing sector of the U.S. job market lost more than 3 million jobs from 2001 to 2007. Over the last two years, over 330,000 manufacturing jobs have come back to the U.S. – there is still a long way to go, however.
One promising trend seen over the last couple of years that should help us close the gap on job loss, is an increase in the number of U.S companies that are bringing their manufacturing back to America. Companies like Apple, Ford and Caterpillar have announced major investments in ‘insourcing’ jobs to the U.S. from places like China, Japan and Mexico.
This increase in U.S. manufacturing means more products stamped with that ever important “Made in the U.S.A” emblem. This is good news for the 52% of people polled by the New York Times that think that it is “very important” that products they buy are made in America. And it’s good news for U.S. manufacturing companies like LaserMan Fabrication, a sheet metal fabrication company in Belvidere, NJ.
“We have all seen the news lately of big name companies like Apple and Ford being committed to bringing more of their manufacturing back into this country,” says Brian Sadowski, owner of LaserMan Fabrication. “We here at LaserMan feel it’s a great opportunity for us to become a large part of this new manufacturing renaissance. Increased U.S. manufacturing means more business for us and the ability for our company to reinvest in our shop which in turn will create more jobs.”
Sadowski also states that, “an advantage of having products manufactured at a company like LaserMan, is customers can be more involved and ‘hands-on’ in the manufacturing process. Turn-around time can be cut from 12 weeks for some overseas companies to just a few weeks.”
Although previously thought to be more cost effective to outsource manufacturing, more and more companies are finding that increased wages in places like China along with prohibitive shipping costs and long turn-around times, make the idea of U.S. manufacturing more and more attractive. Additionally, products made in the U.S. often have a quality that can’t often be matched and less overseas travel to check up on factories and the ability to go over design details and actually touch the product is very appealing to many companies.