Trump’s Year of Tariffs: American Manufacturing Optimism Soars to Record High

The Associated Press
JOHN BINDER

President Trump’s year of imposing tariffs on foreign imports to protect American jobs and industry has marked the highest level of optimism among U.S. manufacturers, a survey by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) reveals.

The survey of nearly 540 U.S. manufacturing firms found that about 90.6 percent, or 9-in-10, say they expect to increase workers’ wages over the next 12 months by at least up to three percent.

This breaks down to about 5.4 percent of firms saying they will increase workers’ wages by more than five percent over the next year, 32.5 percent who say they will increase wages between three and five percent, and nearly 53 percent who expect to hike wages by up to three percent.

Less than one percent of U.S. manufacturers said they would decrease wages, while about 8.5 percent said they would keep wages about the same as they were in 2018.

The NAM survey also reveals record annual optimism this year among American manufacturers after President Trump imposed tariffs on imported steel and aluminum to protect U.S. jobs and industry from exposure to cheap foreign imports.

(National Association of Manufacturers)

On average, in 2018, more than 92 percent of American manufacturers said they had a positive outlook on their company’s future. This is the highest level of positive business outlook for manufacturers in the 20-year history of NAM’s quarterly survey.

When the fourth quarter of 2018 is compared to the fourth quarter of 2016 — when President Obama was finishing out his second term — positive outlooks on business by American manufacturers has increased by more than ten percent.

Since Trump took office in 2017, U.S. manufacturers’ optimism has peaked at more than 95 percent — the highest quarterly record in NAM survey history — and has not dipped below 88.7 percent.

As Breitbart News reported, Trump’s tariffs on imports have stimulated the country’s durable goods manufacturing industry and have created about 11,100 U.S. jobs as of August. Just since Trump’s enactment of the ten percent tariff on imported aluminum, primary aluminum producers are on track to create 1,075 American jobs and downstream producers are to create more than 2,000 jobs in the industry.

John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder

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