For over half a century, American manufacturing has dominated the globe. During this
period, many great American businesses and corporations began. Companies like General
Motors, Levi, and Ford became widely known and promoted. American manufacturing became
synonymous with quality, greatness, and reliability. However, manufacturing in the U.S has
started to plummet as the economy has begun this recession. It may seem as if the country that
used to make everything is really on the edge of making virtually nothing. U.S. jobs in
manufacturing have been vanishing at a fast rate and unemployment percent is on the rise, but
despite the vanishing jobs Americans’ productivity is on the rise and Americans still lead the
world in manufacturing.
An important economic concept that is raised in this article is unemployment. The percentage
of U.S. workers employed in manufacturing has dropped from 16.5% in 1987 to 10.8% today.
In January, 207,000 U.S manufacturing jobs disappeared, which is actually the largest month
drop since 1982. Most recently, the job losses of American manufacturing have been reflected in
the auto industry. As the economy moved into the recession, it lead to the fall in demand for
labor, as firms cut back on production.
Even with the misfortune with unemployment, Americans still lead the world in
manufacturing. But there is a counterbalance to the drop in total employment, the dramatic rise
in productivity. According to the National Association of Manufacturers, over the past two
decades manufacturing productivity has grown by 94%, which is considerably faster than the rest
of the U.S. business sector, where productivity grew by 38% over the same time period.
Another concept that is brought up by the article is international trade and business. There are
a number of gains to be obtained from international trade, such as lower prices, greater choice,
and a variety of resources. Many of the millions of laid-off workers in recent years...