A review of the latest government jobs data reveals an indisputable fact: the U.S. auto industry is making a remarkable recovery. While not the only reason as our new report demonstrates, there is also little doubt that higher fuel efficiency is playing a critical role in the auto industry’s revitalization.
Since June 2009, when the auto industry hit bottom, the U.S. auto industry has grown by 236,600 jobs. Manufacturing of motor vehicles and parts has grown by 165,100 jobs, or 26.4 percent, easily outpacing the recovery of the economy as a whole (see Chart 1 below). Recovery is so strong in three largest auto states, Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana, that auto jobs directly accounts for an astounding 38 percent of the total jobs added in those states, or 66,300 jobs, since the auto industry hit bottom in June 2009 (see Chart 2 below).
CHART 1: 236,600 Auto Jobs Added Since June 2009
CHART 2: Auto Job Growth Strongest in Michigan, Ohio and Indiana
The fuel economy imperative is powering investments and job growth in the three largest auto states, Michigan, Ohio, and Indiana (see chart 4 below). As mentioned above, 66,300 jobs have been added since the auto industry hit bottom in June 2009.
CHART 3: Auto Sales On the Rise
Automakers and suppliers are adding shifts to keep up with demand for the popular Chevy Cruze in Ohio and gearing up to build hot-selling hybrids in Indiana. Meanwhile, Michiganders are building Chevy Volts and Sonics while the state becomes a hotbed of electric vehicle and battery technology innovation.
CHART 4: First Half of 2012 Sets U.S. Fuel Efficiency Record
The Obama Administration’s new National Program, to be released as early as next week, sets carbon pollution fuel efficiency standards for automakers to reach the equivalent of 54.5 mpg by 2025. Broadly supported by the auto industry, environmentalists, and other stakeholders, the National Program provides the regulatory certainty automakers and their suppliers need in order to make investments toward the even greater fuel efficiency necessary for the U.S. auto industry to be globally competitive.
The dividends from the investments to meet the first round of 2012 to 206 standards are already being seen in the form of jobs created, factories reopened and expanded, and communities reinvigorated. I invite you to read our latest report, “How Fuel Efficiency is Driving Growth in the U.S. Auto Industry” to find out more and visit our website DrivingGrowth.org for the latest data and stories.