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INFOGRAPHIC: Facts About Manufacturing

Every day manufacturing touches some aspect of our lives. Whether it’s contributing $2.2 trillion to the U.S. economy, providing 12.3 million jobs across the country or serving as a major source of U.S. research and development (R&D), there is no denying the importance of the manufacturing industry. With our newly updated Facts About Manufacturing infographic you can learn more about these and other interesting data points.

About the author

Zara Brunner

Zara Brunner is the communications director at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Office of Advanced Manufacturing (OAM). Zara received a B.A. with honors in political science with a focus on economics from State University of New York at Fredonia. Prior to joining OAM, Zara managed marketing and communications at the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), which she joined in 2011.  At MEP, she oversaw internal and external marketing and communications about the program and its National Network of Centers.

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Thank you Zara Brunner, for sharing such facts about manufacturing industry. Really a great post!!!
Thanks Zara for this. How does 2017 compare against a couple of previous years? Any data on that?
Thanks for the feedback. Looking at the data from 2016, there appear to be some changes. For instance, the number of total jobs in the U.S. went from 12.1M to 12.3M, wages increased, and manufacturing went from being the 5th largest to 6th largest employer in the country.
Thanks Zara for sharing. My name is George from Tampa, FL. I am looking to acquire an existing manufacturing business. Any tips? I would really appreciate it. Thanks.
Hello George. You can contact the MEP Center in your state, Florida Makes. Phone is 407-450-7206 and the general email address is info [at] (info[at]floridamakes[dot]com). For more information you can also visit their website at
Thanks for sharing this info and the year over year comparison. It's a strong argument for the manufacturing sector, as it continues to struggle with generating talent. It's a growing industry and salaries are on the rise.
Manufacturing leaves a deep impact on our lives. It is absolutely true that the economy is directly depended on the manufacturing. Thanks for this eye-opening information!
It is always nice to know that manufacturing businesses are improving. Even if the increase is not great, it can still be felt. I am fascinated that 59% of US exports are manufactured goods. I would have preferred if manufacturing stayed 5th greatest employer, or gotten higher. That is something to hope for the next year.
Can you please clarify the statistic that 68% of Mfg accounts for U.S. R&D? Did some words get switched around?

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