At a town hall meeting in 2016, then President Obama said of manufacturing: “Some of those jobs of the past are just not going to come back.”

With that in mind, it’s very interesting to learn that manufacturing in the United States is up. Way up.

Katia Dmitrieva reports at Bloomberg:

Manufacturing in the U.S. Just Accelerated to Its Best Year Since 2004

U.S. manufacturing expanded in December at the fastest pace in three months, as gains in orders and production capped the strongest year for factories since 2004, the Institute for Supply Management said Wednesday.

Key Takeaways

The survey-based measure of factory activity — the year’s second-highest behind September, when storm-related supply delays boosted the index — brings the 2017 average to 57.6, the best in 13 years. The latest gain extends a string of strong readings that’s been fueled by more domestic business investment, improving global economies and steady spending by American households.

A common refrain from companies surveyed, though, was difficulty finding highly-skilled labor, and some firms are paying higher wages to attract the workforce needed, ISM manufacturing survey committee chairman Timothy Fiore said on a conference call with reporters.

The acceleration in bookings indicates production will remain robust in coming months as factories race to limit mounting order backlogs amid declining customer inventories. Increasing export orders underscore improvement in global markets.

The Business Times has more:

US manufacturing activity jumps in December: survey

The manufacturing sector that is central to the US economy continued to expand at a strong pace in the final month of 2017, according to an industry survey released Wednesday.

A surge in new orders and strong manufacturing output pushed the Institute for Supply Management’s (ISM) purchasing managers index up 1.5 points to 59.7 per cent, its second highest level in seven years after hitting a peak in September.

This chart puts things in perspective:

In this chart, the green line represents new orders:

A report from Reuters via CNBC indicates that manufacturing will likely get a boost from the new tax reforms as well:

ISM manufacturing and construction spending both clock gains

U.S. factory activity increased more than expected in December, boosted by a surge in new orders growth, in a further sign of strong economic momentum at the end of 2017.

The economy’s robust fundamentals were also underscored by other data on Wednesday showing construction spending rising to a record high in November amid broad gains in both private and public outlays…

Manufacturing is likely to get a boost this year from a $1.5 trillion tax cut approved by the Republican-controlled U.S. Congress last month. The overhaul of the tax code, the most sweeping in 30 years, slashed the corporate income tax rate to 21 percent from 35 percent.

Business spending surged in anticipation of the corporate tax cuts. Recent weakness in the dollar and a strengthening global economy are expected to buoy exports of U.S.-made goods, which would underpin manufacturing.

Where are all the liberal economists like Paul Krugman who predicted the end of the world when Trump was elected? More importantly, do they ever get tired of being wrong?

Featured image via YouTube.