States Losing the Most Jobs to China

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10. Texas
> Pct. jobs lost: 2.26%
> Unemployment rate: 7.2% (19th lowest)
> GDP growth: 3.3% (4th highest)

Of the 20 U.S. congressional districts that lost the most jobs to China, four were based in Texas. Three of those four congressional districts — the 10th, 25th and 31st — are in the Austin area. The area is known for its robust technology sector with large employers including Dell Inc. (NASDAQ: DELL), Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAT) and 3M Co. (NYSE: MMM). Between 2001 and 2011, 66,200 jobs from these districts were lost. Fortunately, Texas’s economy is faring better than most states in the U.S. Its unemployment rate in July was more than a percentage point lower than the national rate of 8.3%. And Austin’s 6.4% unemployment rate as of June, which improved from 7.3% in 2011, was even better than Texas as a whole. GDP growth in 2011 was higher than all states but three. Texas GDP growth of $72.8 billion between 2008 and 2011 was the highest of any state.

9. Colorado
> Pct. jobs lost: 2.38%
> Unemployment rate: 8.3% (20th highest)
> GDP growth: 1.9% (14th highest)

Colorado’s 4th congressional district has been hit harder by job loss than any of the state’s other districts. The district has lost 13,800 jobs to China in a 10-year period, which is 3.91% of the current district employment of 352,500. The 4th congressional district’s largest city is Fort Collins, where notable employers include technology companies such Hewlett-Packard Co. (NYSE: HPQ) and Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (NYSE: AMD). Computers and electronics was the top export to China in 2011, totaling $154 million. The state’s unemployment rate of 8.3% was in line with the federal rate. Between 2008 and 2011, the state’s GDP rose by $3.3 billion, or 1.44%.

Also Read: The World’s Best (and Worst) Economies

8. Vermont
> Pct. jobs lost: 2.43%
> Unemployment rate: 5% (5th lowest)
> GDP growth: 0.5% (15th lowest)

Vermont is known for its production of winter-wear. However, some companies have been choosing to move this traditional local production elsewhere. Companies that have moved plants to China from Vermont include Burton Snowboards and Tubbs Snowshoes. According to a 2010 EPI report, China’s fast-growing paper production in the past few years has put heavy pressure on Vermont’s paper production as well. The state’s GDP growth was only 0.5% in 2011, and only 0.86% between 2008 and 2011, essentially indicating stagnant economic activity. However, the unemployment rate of 5% was more than three points below the national rate and the fifth lowest in the country.

7. Idaho
> Pct. jobs lost: 2.65%
> Unemployment rate: 7.5% (25th highest)
> GDP growth: 0.6% (18th lowest)

In the 1990s and early 2000s, Idaho’s technology sector boomed. By 2000, the state employed 28,300 in the sector, up 11,300 jobs from 1994. But becoming a technology state may have ensured that other jobs went to China, as 2.65% of state jobs were shipped to the People’s Republic between 2001 and 2011. The state has experienced nearly stagnant economic growth within the past three years, with GDP growing only 0.18% between 2008 and 2011. However, the state’s unemployment rate of 7.5% was significantly better than national rate of 8.3%. Idaho exported $278 million worth of computers and electronics to China in 2011, making it its largest export to the country in 2011, according to the U.S.-China Business Council. Between 2000 and 2011, exports to China from the state rose by 596%, while exports to the rest of the world rose by only 57%.

6. Minnesota
> Pct. jobs lost: 2.66%
> Unemployment rate: 5.8% (9th lowest)
> GDP growth: 1.2% (21st highest)

As of 2010, manufacturing was Minnesota’s third-largest industry, with 292,031 positions, according to the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development. The average wage for manufacturing jobs in 2010 was $56,328, or about 20% higher than the average Minnesota wage. Computer and electronic manufacturing comprises 16% of all manufacturing positions. China was Minnesota’s second-largest export market in 2011, with $1.9 billion in exports, according to the U.S.-China Business Council. Machinery exports totaled $544 million, making it the top export industry, followed by computers and electronics at $312 million. Even with some manufacturing jobs now overseas, Minnesota’s unemployment rate of 5.8% is the ninth lowest in the country and 2.5 percentage points below the national unemployment rate of 8.3%.