By the numb#rs

Posted on Jul 14, 2017 :: By the Numbers
Sean P. Johnson
Posted by , Insight on Manufacturing Staff Writer

Manufacturers post profits in Q1

Screen Shot 2017-07-13 at 1.04.34 PMU.S. manufacturing corporations are off to a good start in 2017, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. Seasonally adjusted after-tax profits in the first quarter of 2017 totaled $146.5 billion, up $3.6 billion from the after-tax profits of $142.9 billion recorded in the fourth quarter of 2016, and up $24 billion from the after-tax profits of $122.5 billion recorded in the first quarter of 2016.

Those profits came from seasonally adjusted sales for the quarter totaling $1.633.1 billion, up $32.7 billion from the $1,600.4 billion recorded in the fourth quarter of 2016, and up $96.5 billion from the $1,536.6 billion recorded in the first quarter of 2016.

Manufacturing wages continue to climb

Manufacturing employees have seen pay continue to rise as sales increase, and low unemployment rates have put pressure on wages. Total payroll for Wisconsin manufacturers approached $16.5 billion in the first quarter of 2017, according to data from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, rebounding from a fourth quarter 2016 drop to $16.4 billion from $16.9 billion. Wage pressures are expected to continue to increase while unemployment remains low and the pace of retirements from baby boomers accelerates.

Average weekly wages for the manufacturingsector in the New North region, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, ranged from$999 a week in the Green Bay Metropolitan Statistical Area to $1,290 in the Oshkosh-Neenah MSA.

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We love our manufacturers

Manufacturing is consistently recognized worldwide as one of the industries that contributes most to the economic prosperity of a nation and its citizens. Yet, U.S. manufacturers face an interesting gap when it comes to finding skilled workers and battling outdated industry perceptions. The Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte recently conducted the sixth U.S. Public Opinion of Manufacturing study, which found Americans remain steadfast in their support of manufacturing.

Key findings include:

83% believe manufacturing is important to America’s economic prosperity


8 in 10 Americans believe U.S. manufacturing is important to maintaining Americans’ standard
of living


64% believe the U.S. manufacturing industry is high-tech


67% believe manufacturing jobs are interesting and rewarding


7 in 10 believe the U.S. should invest more in manufacturing


88% believe manufacturing jobs require high technical skills