Factory Jobs Moving Overseas—From China to US

It's a slow trickle, but some companies are 'reshoring'
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted May 22, 2012 3:59 PM CDT
Factory Jobs Moving Overseas—From China to US
This Jan. 25 photo shows coils of brass inside Master Lock company in Milwaukee, Wis. Master Lock recently returned about 100 jobs from Asia to the US.   (AP Photo/Jeffrey Phelps)

Manufacturing jobs are on the move, and this time, they're headed to the US. More and more companies are "reshoring" parts of their operations, bringing a steady trickle of jobs from Chinese plants to American ones, the Wall Street Journal reports. With the dollar dropping, and Asian wages and shipping costs rising, producing goods overseas "is not as big of a no-brainer as it was 10 years ago," says the manager of a plant that recently won back Whirlpool's hand-mixer business.

Of course, that Whirlpool coup created only about 25 jobs. But reshoring cheerleaders say job gains are likely to grow as more goods are produced here. One nonprofit campaigning for reshoring estimates that 25,000 have been brought back in recent years, and a recent survey of 105 companies found that 39% were considering reshoring. "It's not that there's going to be a flood back to the US," says a representative from the Manufacturers Alliance—Asia remains attractive for many goods—but it's no longer the default. (More outsourcing stories.)

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