Manufacturing employment increased in Indiana for a fourth straight year, according to the 2015 Indiana Manufacturers Directory, an industrial database and directory published by Manufacturers’ News Inc. (MNI).

MNI reports Indiana manufacturers added 7,447 jobs from April 2014 to April 2015. The state is now home to 9,351 manufacturers employing 575,985 workers.

"Indiana's industrial base has achieved a remarkable turnaround following the recession's steep losses," says Tom Dubin, MNI president. "The recovery of the state's transportation equipment sector was among the most impressive in the nation, while its low labor costs and friendly business environment continue to fuel growth in a variety of sectors."

Employment gains were led by the transportation equipment sector, which climbed 3.2 percent over the year and 16 percent over the past four years, ranking first in the state for industrial employment with 95,146 jobs. The state's second and third top sectors by employment also posted gains, with second-ranked industrial machinery up 1 percent and third-ranked fabricated metals up 2 percent.

Bright spots for Indiana's manufacturing sector included GM's announcement of its $1.2-billion investment in Fort Wayne's pickup truck plant and Alcoa's establishment of the world's largest aluminum-lithium aerospace factory in Lafayette.

Other manufacturers announcing plant openings in the state included Samtec, which will build a new electronics facility in Scottsburg, Janesville Acoustics, which plans a new operation in Richmond, and Boar's Head, which will open a processing plant in New Castle.

Employment declines were reported in furniture/fixtures, stone/clay/glass, primary metals and paper products. Industrial locations announcing closures included furniture maker Mobel Inc. in Ferdinand and ATI Castings in LaPorte.

Manufacturing employment in Indianapolis remained steady over the year, with the city currently home to the most manufacturing workers at 73,704. Elkhart posted a 5.1-percent manufacturing employment increase and ranks second in the state for number of workers with 30,759 jobs. Third-ranked Fort Wayne accounts for 25,211 jobs, while fourth-ranked Evansville is home to 16,376 jobs.

For more information, visit www.manufacturersnews.com.