Many writers have argued that the U.S. has reached its peak and is on the decline. However, one area that continues to defy this theory is the American manufacturing sector. Evidence mounts daily to suggest that the U.S. is on the verge of a true manufacturing renaissance. The effects of several factors are beginning to combine and appear poised to dramatically improve the situation for American manufacturing.
One such factor would be how the recently discovered vast energy reserves in the U.S. are effectively keeping prices low. The U.S. boasts one of the largest reserves of shale gas in the world, second only to China. Another factor is the innovation in technologies that are revolutionizing the efficiency of the manufacturing sector. The American dominance in industries like information technology means that it makes more and more sense for companies to locate their operations closest to the centers of innovation that increase efficiency. General Electric, for example, has already begun moving its Asian operations to California in order to benefit from greater proximity to Silicon Valley.
Perhaps most important is the shrinking of the advantage that China once offered with its vast population of low-wage workers. American labor productivity and the raising of Chinese wages by nearly 20% every year means that companies no longer see any reason to outsource production. Indeed, a report from the Boston Consulting Group has confirmed what many economists had begun to suspect years ago: China and the U.S. are virtually tied in how much it costs to manufacture goods in each country. What costs $1 to manufacture in America now costs 96 cents in China.
We at Stern Companies are proud to say that our own manufacturing plant does rotational molding and varied assembly work, while also working very closely with a number of different manufacturers who require different processes. From injection to thermoforming to extrusions, our home-grown American expertise offers the highest quality solutions for any customer need.