Louisiana’s Industrial Employment Jumped 2.9% over Past Year
For the second year in a row, industrial employment in Louisiana posted a gain, according to the 2013 Louisiana Manufacturers Register®, an industrial directory published annually by Manufacturers’ News, Inc. (MNI) Evanston, IL. MNI reports Louisiana gained 5,685 manufacturing jobs from May 2012 to May 2013, or 2.9% – – more than double the gain MNI reported for the 2011-2012 survey period, and two percentage points above the national average gain as reported by the Labor Department.
Manufacturers’ News reports Louisiana is now home to 5,264 manufacturers employing 196,432 workers.
“Louisiana’s industrial climate continues to improve,” says Tom Dubin, President of the Evanston, IL-based publishing company, which has been surveying industry since 1912. “The state’s abundant natural resources and friendly business environment continue to result in many companies investing in its industrial sector, particularly those in the oil & gas and chemicals industries.”
According to MNI, employment in oil & gas extraction rose 17.2% in Louisiana over the survey period, with the third-ranking sector currently accounting for 22,824 of the state’s industrial jobs. Oil and gas companies that have announced plans to locate facilities in Louisiana included South Africa-based Sasol, which will open a natural gas to diesel plant in Westlake; and Methanex, which recently announced it would open a second ethanol plant in Geismar.
MNI reports employment in Louisiana’s chemicals sector increased 1.4%, and currently ranks first in the state for industrial employment at 25,296 jobs. Bright spots for the chemicals industry included Dyno Nobel’s plans to build an ammonia plant in Jefferson Parish; the expansion of Nalco’s dry polymer plant in Garyville; the expansion of two ExxonMobil chemical plants in Baton Rouge and Port Allen; and the recent opening of Myriant’s biochemical production facility in Lake Providence.
Other sectors to gain jobs included transportation equipment, up 7.8% and industrial machinery & equipment, up 5.2%. Fabricated metals, primary metals, and instruments/related products were each up 2.8%, while textiles/apparel rose 2.5%. Losses were seen in electronics, down 12.5%; printing/publishing, down 5.4%; furniture/fixtures, down 2.6%; paper products, down 2.2%; and stone/clay/glass, down 1.1%.
Industrial locations closing down included PepsiCo’s bottling plant in St. John the Baptist Parish; International Paper’s container plant in Minden; and Hostess-operated Cotton Brothers Bakery in Alexandria.
Gains were spread out across all regions of the state, according to MNI. Southeast Louisiana accounts for the most industrial employment in the state with 99,543 jobs, up 2% over the past twelve months. Southwest Louisiana accounts for 57,231 jobs, up 6.8%, while the Northwest region accounts for 28,743 jobs, up a half percent. The Northeast region is home to 10,915 industrial workers, up 1.8%.
MNI’s city data shows Baton Rouge remains Louisiana’s top city for manufacturing employment, with 15,654 industrial jobs, virtually unchanged over the survey period. Second-ranked Houma accounts for 10,248 jobs, up 13%, while industrial employment in Shreveport increased 2.1% over the year, and is currently home to 10,245 jobs. Lafayette accounts for 9,624 jobs, up 7.1%, while New Orleans is home to 9,159 jobs, up 1.7%.
Detailed profiles of Louisiana’s 5,264 manufacturing companies and 1,166 distributors can be found in the 2013 Louisiana Manufacturers Register® available in print for $111, or available online through MNI’s industrial database subscription service EZSelect.com. Users may generate custom profiles of manufacturers using a variety of criteria, including region, SIC, sales volume, number of employees, and more. Each business profile provides up to 30 facts, including vital contact information, 19,367 executives by name and title, product(s) manufactured, and more.
Manufacturers’ News, Inc. is the nation’s oldest and largest publisher of state industrial directories and manufacturers databases. For 101 years the company has identified, researched and profiled manufacturing companies. MNI employs an 85-person editorial staff to scour business registrations, trade journals, financial reports, and many other sources to pinpoint every manufacturing establishment in the U.S. Each manufacturer is contacted throughout the year to update their profiles, including their employee counts.