Aerospace employment continues dramatic upswing

ARLINGTON, Va., 14 February 2005. Aerospace industry jobs continued an extraordinary turnaround during the final quarter of 2004, boosting employment from a 50-year low earlier in the year to solidify the sector as a lynchpin in the U.S. economy, AIA officials said.

ARLINGTON, Va., 14 February 2005. Aerospace industry jobs continued an extraordinary turnaround during the final quarter of 2004, boosting employment from a 50-year low earlier in the year to solidify the sector as a lynchpin in the U.S. economy, AIA officials said.

The industry added 8,000 jobs to round out the year, ending up with an increase of 27,400 from February through December. It was the third straight quarter of growth.
The statistics, compiled by AIA's Aerospace Research Center, show aerospace jobs accounted for one in six manufacturing jobs created last year, AIA President and CEO John W. Douglass said.

Aerospace is also one of the few sectors in the U.S. economy with a foreign trade surplus, which is about $32 billion. That information is especially telling in light of last week's announcement of an unprecedented $618 billion national foreign trade deficit, Douglass said.

"Aerospace is clearly vital to our country's economic well-being," Douglass said. "It's important our national leaders keep this in mind when considering policies that affect our industry."

Aerospace employment hit a 50-year low of 579,700 in February before the growth trend began. The number of workers in the industry reached 607,100 by the end of last year. The statistics, which come from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, includes workers in aircraft and engines, missiles and space vehicles, and search, detection and navigation instruments.

For the year the aircraft sector increased its workforce by 5 percent and instrument manufacturing added 4 percent. Missile and space vehicle employment declined slightly. Additionally, average weekly hours and overtime hours worked generally increased in 2004, indicating further workforce near-term growth in 2005 is likely.

For more information see www.aia-aerospace.org/stats/aero_stats/aero_stats.cfm.

Founded in 1919, the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) is a trade association representing the nation's manufacturers of commercial, military and business aircraft, helicopters, aircraft engines, missiles, spacecraft, materiels, and related components and equipment.

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