Manufacturing in the USA

Manufacturing in the USA

Thesis statement

Many scholars all over the world once believed that manufacturing industry in the USA will always have a steady upward growth over the years (Godwin & Ike, 1996).  However, several surveys and studies done in the recent years show that though the trend in the manufacturing is increasing, it loses its concentration of growth in some instances. By clearly and objectively providing the history of the manufacturing industry of the USA since 1960 to 2008 through value added on the graph, this paper will effectively illustrate the trend of the manufacturing industry in the USA and the output in terms of products and employment.

Purpose of the paper

This paper on manufacturing, examines the growth of the manufacturing industry in the USA between the years 1960 and 2008.  In addition, the paper illustrates the output of the manufacturing industry over the years and seeks to explain the subsequent interruptions in the upward trend of the industry.  The paper will further explain the scenarios observed on the graph for better understanding and interpretation of the case study, and remove the perceptions that exist about the manufacturing industry in the USA.

Overview of the essay

The case study makes its argument clear about the perception on the vibrancy of the manufacturing industry. First, that vibrancy has declined due to declining employment and that traditional industries have closed down.  The case thus provides data to support the fact that the industry is still vibrant.  The data on the employment and value added are plotted against the years 1960 to 2008.  The paper further provides an explanation to the events on the graph as well as those outside but affects the industry.

The case study

The case study on the manufacturing industry provides an analysis of the growth of employment and manufacturing output for the period between 1960 and 2008. The graph helps to explain the occasional meltdown of the production growth which is associated with other factors not on the plotted graph. The case study provides an opportunity to explain the observations on the graph. The interruptions on the production curve are further explained.  This is due to the occasional recessions that are experienced all over the world.

The case study also examines the perceptions that have been growing in regard to the manufacturing industry in the USA.  The perception that the manufacturing industry is not vibrant is explained by the case study.  The perception is due to the fact that there has been increased relocation of the manufacturing industries to other regions within the USA.  In addition, the number of employee continues to decline, hence purporting a decline in manufacturing vibrancy.

The data

The data from the graph help to support the case analysis. The plotted graph shows that the general output of the manufacturing industry in the USA continue to grow over the years. The production output of the year 2008 is bigger than the year 1960. This helps to support the argument that the industry is still vibrant.  The minor interruptions in the steady growth of manufacturing output are explained by the occasional meltdown. This recessions affects the whole world including the USA, therefore production is expected to decline as witnessed in 2008 and 1982. At the same time, the graph facilitates the understanding that the growth of manufacturing output can happen with a dwindling employment rate. Employment reached its peak in the year 1979 with a record 19,426,000 personnel being employed by the industry.  However, the trend changed and was followed by a decline in the employment rate. Subsequently, the manufacturing industry is seen to speed up and slow down at some point in the period plotted. Nevertheless, the manufacturing output continued with an increasing trend.  This is due to the fact that fewer workers could produce more by working more hours. In addition as globalization takes center stage, new technologies and processes have emerged hence increasing production (Carol, 1997).

Projection of the numbers

I project that the production vibrancy of the manufacturing industry in USA will continue with the same trend.  I expect to see an increased value addition of about 2500 billion by the year 2018, while employment is expected to decrease to around 800 billion in the same year.  This will be due to advancing technology and globalization. This could only be possible in the case that a meltdown is not experienced. In the case that an economic recession happens, I project the numbers to be lower.


The growth rate of the manufacturing industry in the USA is undoubtedly rapid and fragile.  This implies that the industry continue to grow at a faster rate, but faces many challenges among them world recession.  The industry vibrancy will continue to be felt in terms of production while at the same time a decline in the employment is inevitable.  The new technological advancement and innovations is undoubtedly the driving force behind the success of the manufacturing value addition and vibrancy.


Carol, A. (1997). Rapid prototyping and manufacturing in the USA. Rapid Prototyping Journal, 3 (3) 76-80.

Godwin, J., & Ike, C. (1996). Advanced manufacturing technologies: Determinants of implementation success. International Journal of Operations & Production Management, 16 (12) 12-45.

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