The decline in American manufacturing is a common refrain, particularly from Donald Trump. “We don’t make anything anymore,” he told Fox News last October, while defending his own made-in-Mexico clothing line.
Without question, manufacturing has taken a significant hit during recent decades, and further trade deals raise questions about whether a new shocks could hit manufacturing.
But there is also a different way to look at the data. In reality, United States manufacturing output is at an all-time high, worth $2.7 trillion in 2015, up from $1.7 trillion in 2009. And while total employment has fallen by nearly a third since 1970, the jobs that remain are increasingly skilled.
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