Washington, D.C. – Manufacturing gained 21,000 jobs in February, according to data released on Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The sector is still down 561,000 jobs over the year, as factories continue to face challenges stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic and surging imports, along with supply chain shortages.
The Commerce Department unveiled new trade figures on Friday that show the goods deficit reached a record $221.1 billion in January, another alarming sign for the sector.
Alliance for American Manufacturing President Scott Paul said:
“It’s good to see factory job growth resume after January’s slump, but the pace must pick up. At this rate, recovering all the manufacturing jobs lost during the pandemic will take more than two years.
“That’s why it is so important for Congress and the Biden administration to speedily complete the short-term COVID-19 rescue package, and then shift to work on a sustained, robust public investment in infrastructure, clean energy, and innovation.
“One thing to point out here: January goods imports were the highest on record. Made in America procurement efforts and the rebuilding of domestic supply chains couldn’t come at a better time.”