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Heather Cox Richardson: September 26, 2022

September 26, 2022

By Heather Cox Richardson, Letters from an American

A headline in the New York Times today read: “Factory Jobs Are Booming Like It’s the 1970s.” The story explained that more money in the hands of consumers thanks to federal stimulus spending, along with a new skepticism of stretched supply lines, has created a rebound in American manufacturing.

Since the 1970s, authors Jim Tankersley, Alan Rappeport, and Ana Swanson explain, outsourcing and automation have meant that every recession has seen factory jobs disappear and never return as employers used downturns to move operations to countries with lower wage levels. This time, though, American manufacturers have not only regained all the jobs lost during the pandemic, they have also added about 67,000 more. Those numbers would be higher if the labor market weren’t so tight, a condition leading employers to offer higher wages and better benefits.

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Image by Rudy and Peter Skitterians from Pixabay 

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