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10 American States With the Most Auto Manufacturing Jobs

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Over a month has passed since the United Auto Workers labor union went on strike. Demanding higher pay, better benefits, and stronger job protections, thousands of auto industry workers have halted production in plants across the country in recent weeks. While a deal between the UAW and auto executives appears within reach, the strike has cost the Big Three U.S. automakers – Ford (NYSE: F), General Motors (NYSE: GM), and Stellantis (NYSE: STLA) – hundreds of millions of dollars.

The American auto industry is among the largest in the world, and motor vehicle manufacturing has long been an economic pillar in the United States. But jobs in the industry no longer offer the security and financial stability they once did. Cuts in both pay and benefits enacted both before and during the Great Recession have remained in place for over a decade, while compensation for corporate executives has increased.

The U.S. auto industry – and the recent turmoil within it – has not impacted all parts of the country equally, however. There are over half a million Americans working in motor vehicle manufacturing, and virtually all of them are concentrated in just a handful of states.

Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Current Employment Statistics program, 24/7 Wall St. identified the 10 American states with the most auto manufacturing jobs. The states on this list are ranked by the number of people employed in motor vehicle and motor vehicle body, trailer, and parts manufacturing in 2022. We also reviewed five year change in auto manufacturing employment.

While the UAW strike has largely focused on better pay and benefits, concerns over job security are also well founded. In over half of the 10 states on this list, employment in auto manufacturing has fallen in the last five years – and in two states, over 10% of auto manufacturing jobs have disappeared since 2018.

In stark contrast, employment in California’s motor vehicle manufacturing industry surged by 70% between 2018 and 2022. The state is home to several manufacturing facilities owned by Tesla, a company that reported over $94 billion in revenue in 2022, more than triple what it made in 2019.

10. Mississippi

  • Auto manufacturing employment; 2022: 5,700
  • Five-year change in auto manufacturing employment; 2018-2022: -6.6% (-400 jobs)
  • Total employment, all industries; 2022: 1,164,800
  • Five-year change in total employment, all industries; 2018-2022: +1.0% (+11,000 jobs)

9. New York

  • Auto manufacturing employment; 2022: 9,200
  • Five-year change in auto manufacturing employment; 2018-2022: -15.6% (-1,700 jobs)
  • Total employment, all industries; 2022: 9,518,800
  • Five-year change in total employment, all industries; 2018-2022: -1.7% (-166,100 jobs)

8. Missouri

  • Auto manufacturing employment; 2022: 11,600
  • Five-year change in auto manufacturing employment; 2018-2022: +2.7% (+300 jobs)
  • Total employment, all industries; 2022: 2,927,900
  • Five-year change in total employment, all industries; 2018-2022: +1.2% (+35,200 jobs)

7. Texas

  • Auto manufacturing employment; 2022: 14,900
  • Five-year change in auto manufacturing employment; 2018-2022: +24.2% (+2,900 jobs)
  • Total employment, all industries; 2022: 13,458,600
  • Five-year change in total employment, all industries; 2018-2022: +7.5% (+935,300 jobs)

6. California

  • Auto manufacturing employment; 2022: 32,300
  • Five-year change in auto manufacturing employment; 2018-2022: +70.0% (+13,300 jobs)
  • Total employment, all industries; 2022: 17,688,900
  • Five-year change in total employment, all industries; 2018-2022: +3.0% (+516,600 jobs)

5. Alabama

  • Auto manufacturing employment; 2022: 44,900
  • Five-year change in auto manufacturing employment; 2018-2022: +15.1% (+5,900 jobs)
  • Total employment, all industries; 2022: 2,111,700
  • Five-year change in total employment, all industries; 2018-2022: +3.2% (+65,400 jobs)

4. Kentucky

  • Auto manufacturing employment; 2022: 56,200
  • Five-year change in auto manufacturing employment; 2018-2022: -5.2% (-3,100 jobs)
  • Total employment, all industries; 2022: 1,961,400
  • Five-year change in total employment, all industries; 2018-2022: +1.6% (+31,000 jobs)

3. Ohio

  • Auto manufacturing employment; 2022: 86,000
  • Five-year change in auto manufacturing employment; 2018-2022: -12.2% (-11,900 jobs)
  • Total employment, all industries; 2022: 5,529,300
  • Five-year change in total employment, all industries; 2018-2022: -0.6% (-33,300 jobs)

2. Indiana

  • Auto manufacturing employment; 2022: 108,200
  • Five-year change in auto manufacturing employment; 2018-2022: -0.6% (-700 jobs)
  • Total employment, all industries; 2022: 3,193,600
  • Five-year change in total employment, all industries; 2018-2022: +1.7% (+54,900 jobs)

1. Michigan

  • Auto manufacturing employment; 2022: 166,800
  • Five-year change in auto manufacturing employment; 2018-2022: -4.7% (-8,300 jobs)
  • Total employment, all industries; 2022: 4,362,200
  • Five-year change in total employment, all industries; 2018-2022: -1.4% (-63,900 jobs)

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