"Big Steel is opening and refurbishing facilities across the country, with automakers heading into the US, including BMW, which has just announced a major new factory – the US is booming!" The President tweeted this week.
Well, maybe. However, it is difficult to say that offshoring and "reshoring", as the opposite effect of job repatriation in one country is known, is extremely difficult to measure.
The answer is important when the Democrats oppose Trump's newly signed replacement for the North American Free Trade Agreement – and because he is making a slow dance with Chinese leader Xi Jinping and European leaders on a series of trade issues to the Union G20- Summit in Argentina.
What We Know: Manufacturing has been recovering since recession depths. Employment rose from 11.5 million jobs in 2010 to nearly 12.8 million today. This was for a variety of reasons, including the advent of low-energy oil and gas fracking and a flood of unemployed people seeking lower wages. Employers are also at greater risk in long global supply chains and have become a just-in-time production strategy that allows traders to respond quickly to changing customer needs when their factories are located on American soil.
"It's still a one-way street," says Scott Paul, president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, which is backed by the United Steelworkers Union and the manufacturers. "We still have a production leaving the US, but you also see some reshoring measures."
There is one source of data that offshoring explicitly measures: Trade Adjustment Assistance, a government subsidy available since 1975 to workers who lose jobs when companies work overseas or restrict competition due to competition from cheaper imports. Use of the program increased during the recession and then returned to more normal levels.
However, this is not yet a perfect benchmark as it is also influenced by the generous funding of the program and the willingness of states to certify applications. This is not very useful for real-time measurements because the application data is posted with a delay. In addition, it misses the more gradual shift of production to other countries.
Similarly, other companies point to changing demand patterns. For example, United Technologies is currently discontinuing operations at its acquired in 2012 aerospace factory in Chula Vista, California, which will result in a loss of more than 300 jobs. The company says the aircraft components manufactured there since the 1950s were simply not sold anymore.
"We have not found anything that is possible at this location," says Stacey MacNeil, vice president of communications at UTC Aerospace Systems, the division that operates the plant.
The union representing these workers says it's hard to believe that a factory that used to employ more than 10,000 workers shrank to almost nothing in three decades, while Mexico's aviation industry was booming.
"Companies do it all the time," says Owen Herrnstadt, chief of staff of the International Machinists' Association. "They are outsourcing work, investing in other areas, finishing some work on programs that are ending – and then concluding that the program is over, rather than investing in the US plant, making US workers new Programs could stay busy. "  Ohio Senator: Trump said he wants to help & # 39; In the midst of the closure of GM plants "data-src-mini =" // cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/181129080327-sen-sherrod-brown-11-29-01-small-169.jpg "data -src-xsmall = "// cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/181129080327-sen-sherrod-brown-11-29-01-medium-plus-169.jpg" data-src-small = "http : //cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/181129080327-sen-sherrod-brown-11-29-01-large-169.jpg "data-src-medium =" // cdn.cnn.com/ cnnnext / dam / assets / 181129080327-sen-sherrod-brown-11-29-01-exlarge-169.jpg "data-src-large =" // cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/181129080327-sense -sherrod-brown-11-29-01-super-169.jpg "data-src-full16x9 =" // cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/181129080327-sen-sherrod-brown-11-29- 01-full-169.jpg "data-src-mini1x1 =" // cdn.cnn.com/cnnnext/dam/assets/181129080327-sen-sherrod-brown-11-29-01-small-11.jpg "data -demand-load = "not-loaded" data-eq-pts = "mini: 0, xsmall: 221, small: 308, medium: 461, large: 781" src = "data: image / gif; base64, R0lGODlhEAAJAAEAAAAP / ////// wAAACH5BAEAAAIALAAAAAAQAAkAAAIKlI + py + 0Po5yUFQA7 "/ >