Bringing US Jobs Back Home Is So Far More Rhetoric than Reality

Tuesday, 19 Feb 2013 12:54 PM

By John Morgan

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Everyone in Washington, D.C., seems to be riding the same bandwagon of bringing manufacturing jobs back home to the United States, but the number of companies actually doing it is probably tiny, according to MarketWatch.

“Unfortunately there’s not a lot of hard numbers,” said Chad Moutray, chief economist of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). “There just isn’t a lot of data.”

The Reshoring Initiative is an organization that encourages U.S. businesses to return manufacturing back home. Harry Moser, founder and president, estimates about 50,000 manufacturing jobs have returned to the U.S. in the last three years — hardly a large number.

Editor's Note: Prophetic Economist Warns: “It’s Curtains for America.” See Evidence.

Moser came up with the estimate by adding up the numbers from actual news reports of companies returning jobs to America and extrapolating from the data. Yet he acknowledged he does not know how many jobs have departed the United States during the same period.

“Off-shoring has continued. It’s still happening,” Moser said.

President Barack Obama expressed interest in tax reform that would lower corporate rates during his State of the Union address — a position avidly embraced also by Republicans and business leaders.

“Our first priority is making America a magnet for new jobs and manufacturing,” he said.

But both parties have been talking about tax reform for years, and so far there has been no real action on the issue, MarketWatch reported.

Meanwhile, the official U.S. corporate tax rate remains 35 percent, which is the highest among industrial nations.

The nation’s manufacturers have added nearly 500,000 jobs since the end of the recession, and now employ about 12 million workers.

But the gains look slim compared with the 6 million manufacturing jobs that disappeared from 2000 to 2010, when many migrated to China and other low-cost countries.

Jay Timmons, CEO of NAM, said, “Tax reform is essential because it is our uncompetitive system that is hurting manufacturers both at home and in the global marketplace.”

Gad Levanon, an economist at The Conference Board research firm, told Workforce.com that the beginning of a trend to bring work back to the United States does not mean the end of offshoring.

“It’s going to be a gradual thing,” he predicted. “It will be more rare to see companies actually shut down existing, functioning operations in emerging countries.”

Editor's Note: Prophetic Economist Warns: “It’s Curtains for America.” See Evidence.

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