Manufacturing Employment, China Trade

Matt Kuenzel
May 25, 2024


Manufacturing employment as a percentage of all workers has been steadily declining for almost 80 years. From a high of 38% in the late 1940s, it has recently reached about 8% of all workers.

Although it’s absurd to believe that a US president has much control over the economy, here are the numbers for the full term of the Trump administration and the first three years of the Biden administration.

Trump administration
Biden administration (first three years)

Trade with China

Steadily rising until just before the Covid pandemic
Steadily rising again after the pandemic until the Russian invasion. Did tariffs in 2018 cause the drop in 2019?
Tariffs rose through 2021 but trade rose strongly during that period.