Manufacturing, services industries see greatest growth in July
Information sector declines 5.1%

By KATHERINE MICHALETS, Freeman Staff

September 1, 2018

An employee of the RMG Waukesha Foundry pours molten metal into molds in 2016.

File photo

 

WAUKESHA - The majority of metro Milwaukee areas saw economic gains during the month of July, largely thanks to the strengthening manufacturing sector, according to a report from the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce.

The report showed that most of the metro area indicators showed year-overyear improvement in July. Fifteen of 23 July indicators improved from year-ago levels, down from June’s 17 upward-pointing indicators.

“The area’s manufacturing sector provided a firm foundation for metro area economic growth in July,” said Bret Mayborne, economic research director for the MMAC, in a statement. “Strong year-over-year gains in the number of manufacturing jobs as well as corresponding growth in production and earnings indicators for manufacturing production workers helped lead the way.”

Highlights of the report included: nonfarm employment averaged 880,200 in July, a 1.2 percent increase from one year ago; July’s gain ranks higher than the average 1 percent year-overyear gain posted over the course of 2018’s first seven months; July employment gains were registered in six of 10 major industry sectors.

In addition, the MMAC reported that the leisure & hospitality sector — up 3.5 percent — registered the strongest year-over-year job increase. The sector with the highest decline was the information sector at 5.1 percent.

The manufacturing sector increased 3.5 percent in July compared with July 2017. According to the MMAC, along with the number of job increases for manufacturing, there also were gains in local hours and earnings indicators for manufacturing production workers. The average length of a production worker’s workweek reached 43.8 hours in July, up 7.1 percent from one year ago, according to the report. In addition, average weekly earnings for production workers rose 8.8 percent to $1,012. Average hourly earnings for such workers increased 1.6 percent, to $23.10.

kmichalets@conleynet.com (262) 513-2644