Many milestones were met in the year 2018, with manufacturing adding over 284,000 jobs, amounting to the best year for the industry since 1997, according to CNBC.
Manufacturing was a big deal for then-candidate Donald Trump, saying that the industry was dying due to the massive amounts of regulation passed by President Obama. This is where he gained supporters in states such as Michigan where manufacturing jobs are a decent chunk of the jobs market.
In December alone, manufacturing grew by 32,000, with most of the gains occurring in blue-collar durable good manufacturing. Fabricated metals and computer electronics products also grew in December.
The 2018 totals greatly surpassed 2017, with that year totaling 207,000 jobs created in manufacturing.
“Manufacturers are bringing people back into the workforce, and we need this trend to continue,” chief economist at the National Association of Manufacturers Dr. Chad Moutray said Friday. “Our industry currently faces a workforce crisis with more than half a million open jobs today, and 2.4 million jobs expected to go unfilled over the next decade. Closing the skills gap continues to be the top challenge facing manufacturers in the United States and is absolutely essential to ensuring that the sector continues to grow.”
According to CNBC, more people entered the workforce to provide professional or business services in 2018, amounting to about 583,000, while 517,000 applied to work in the education and health market. The two categories that lost jobs over the year are information and utilities.