For the second year in a row, industrial employment in Texas posted a significant gain, according to the 2013 Texas Manufacturers Register published by Manufacturers' News Inc. (MNI). MNI reports Texas gained 32,680 manufacturing jobs from April 2012 to April 2013, which was more than double the gain for the 2011-2012 survey period and two percentage points above the national average gain as reported by the Labor Department. Texas is now home to 22,642 manufacturers employing 1.2 million workers.
"Texas' industrial climate continues to improve," says Tom Dubin, president of MNI. "The state's abundant natural resources, friendly business environment and ideal location for the shipment of goods continue to result in many companies investing in its manufacturing sector, particularly those in the oil and gas and electronics industries."
Gains were spread across most sectors, with some of the largest increases seen in the state's top industries by employment. Industrial machinery and equipment ranked first in the state for manufacturing employment with 175,592 jobs. Fabricated metals came in second with 120,680 manufacturing jobs, while oil and gas extraction accounted for 118,496 industrial jobs.
Bright spots for the state included Samsung's expansion of its semiconductor plant in Austin, Motorola's plans to open a new plant in Fort Worth, the opening of Caterpillar's new excavator factory in Victoria, and chemical maker Kuraray America Inc.'s announcement it would expand facilities in LaPorte and Pasadena. In addition, Apple recently announced it would locate a new Macintosh assembly plant in the state, and pet-food maker Canidae established a new factory in Brownwood.
Other sectors to gain jobs included instruments/related products, rubber/plastics, transportation equipment, primary metals, electronics and chemicals. Only two sectors posted notable losses: stone/clay/glass and printing/publishing.
Industrial locations announcing closures included Beef Products Inc., which shuttered a plant in Amarillo following the "pink slime" controversy, and BAE Systems' location in Irving.
MNI's city data shows Houston remains Texas' and the nation's top city for manufacturing employment, with 249,934 industrial jobs, followed by Dallas with 71,361 jobs and Fort Worth with 64,960 jobs. San Antonio ranked fourth with 52,225 jobs, while Austin accounted for 47,620 jobs.
For more information, visit www.manufacturersnews.com.