Monday, February 10, 2020

Why I expect further declines in manufacturing jobs

 - by New Deal democrat

This is the week I highlight further information from last Friday’s jobs report. 

One thing that struck me is that we’ve now had two months of declines in manufacturing jobs. This is something I have been anticipating since about the middle of last year, because the manufacturing work week had been declining significantly, and it has a reliable 80+ year history of leading manufacturing jobs. Here’s the entire history measured as YoY% changes: 

The manufacturing work week is down -1.4% YoY. So in the next two graphs I’ve added +1.4% to that number so that it is exactly equal to the zero line. Here is that data split up into two 40 year intervals:

There has literally *never* been a time, in all of that 80 year history, when hours have been down this much for this long, and manufacturing jobs have not gone down YoY. Further, leaving out one month YoY declines, in all but three occasions (1953, 1966, and 1995) a recession has resulted. That’s 11 out of 14 times total, with at least two of the other three being slowdowns.

In short, I am expecting further losses in manufacturing jobs in the next few months.