Connecticut added manufacturing jobs at its fastest rate in decades, according to data collected by Manufacturers' News Inc. (MNI). MNI reports Connecticut added 3,153 manufacturing jobs from June 2017 to June 2018.
The state is now home to 4,790 manufacturers employing 215,652 workers. This is the third straight year Connecticut has recorded a gain in industrial employment.
"With its highly educated workforce and focus on advanced manufacturing, Connecticut remains a top destination for high-tech and innovative enterprises, and now that the state has finally passed a budget, capital funding to new and expanding businesses is starting to free up," says Tom Dubin, MNI president. "However, business costs in Connecticut are among the highest in the nation, and ongoing tariff issues are creating uncertainty among the state’s manufacturers."
Employment gains over the past year were overwhelmingly led by the state’s transportation equipment sector, which surged by 13 percent and ranks as Connecticut’s largest industrial sector by number of jobs. Continued hiring at Pratt and Whitney’s engine plant in East Hartford has primarily driven gains, while aerospace suppliers such as Aero Gear in Windsor are expanding production and hiring more workers in response.
Among the other industries adding jobs were food processing, furniture/fixtures, stone/clay/glass and rubber/plastics.
New plant announcements in Connecticut were abundant and included Serta Simmons’ new mattress plant in Windsor Locks. Other new projects on the horizon include Morgan Truck Co., which recently announced plans to establish a $19 million factory in Plainfield.
A number of expansions were also announced, such as Carla’s Pasta, which has expanded its facility in South Windsor for the third time in 15 years, and Economy Spring, which has doubled its manufacturing space at its Southington facility.
Losses were reported in chemical processing, which shed 4 percent of its workforce due partially to the closure of Alexion Pharmaceuticals. In addition, printing/publishing declined 3 percent, while lumber/wood fell by 2 percent.
Stratford remains the state’s top city by manufacturing jobs, followed by East Hartford and Bristol.
For more information, visit www.mni.net.