Commerce secretary says 6.4 million jobs linked to exports
Speaking at the Port of Houston Thursday, U.S. Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker highlighted new data that shows U.S. manufactured exports supported 6.4 million jobs in 2011.
About 10 percent of those jobs were in Texas, which led the nation in the number of jobs – nearly 700,000 – supported by manufactured export goods.
Pritzker is in Houston as part of her nationwide listening tour, during which she’s traveling around the country meeting with businesses, thought leaders, academics, entrepreneurs and Commerce employees to hear about their priorities, concerns, and ideas on how the public and private sectors can work together to strengthen the economy and create American jobs.
“Exports of U.S. manufactured goods are a driving force in the U.S. economy, supporting local communities by creating jobs,” Pritzker said in a statement. “Right here at the Port of Houston, you are doing the work that is helping American firms send a record amount of exports all over the globe. Your success is good for Texas, and good for the nation's economy as we continue working to sell American products and services to the 95 percent of consumers who live outside our borders.”
Earlier this year, the Commerce Department released data that ranked Houston as the leading U.S. metropolitan area for merchandise exports in 2012 – $110 billion. Texas also achieved record exports during the first six months of 2013 ($134.4 billion) with merchandise exports increasing by 3 percent in the first half of 2013 compared to the same period of 2012.
Other details from the data showed that more than one-third of manufacturing jobs in primary metals, computer and electronic products, textile mills and machinery were supported by exports.
The data noted 686,300 employees in California, followed by Illinois (352,700), Ohio (346,000), and Michigan (279,700), rounded out the top five states with the most jobs supported by manufactured exports. Louisiana led the nation in the share of private workforce jobs supported by manufacturing exports – 10.2 percent – or 159,600 jobs.
In 2011, nearly 40 percent of all manufacturing workers in the state of Washington depended on exports for their jobs. Nationwide, 399,900 manufacturing jobs were supported by the export of transportation equipment, the Commerce Department said.