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Oklahoma Loses Industrial Jobs For First Time Since Recession

Contact: Jennifer Ratcliff
Manufacturers' News, Inc.
1633 Central St.
Evanston, IL 60201
(847) 864-9440 ext. 241
jratcliff [at]

EVANSTON, Ill, November 16th 2015/Manufacturers' News, Inc./-- Following several years of strong post-recession gains, industrial employment in Oklahoma declined over the past year, reports the 2016 Oklahoma Manufacturers Register®, an industrial database and directory published by Manufacturers' News, Inc. (MNI) Evanston, IL. According to MNI’s database of manufacturers, Oklahoma shed 2,915 industrial jobs from September 2014 to September 2015, or 1.4%, the first loss MNI has reported for the state since the recession.

MNI reports Oklahoma is now home to 5,264 manufacturers employing 208,108 workers.

Oklahoma is struggling with the fallout from depressed oil prices as well as a stronger dollar,” says Tom Dubin, President of the Evanston, IL-based publishing company, which has been surveying industry since 1912. “However, its advantages go beyond oil, with low business costs, solid infrastructure, as well as generous incentive packages drawing many businesses to the state.”

MNI data shows employment losses were led by the state’s oil and gas extraction sector, which fell 2.8% in the past twelve months after rising 43% over a five-year period from September 2009 to September 2014. Oil/gas extraction ranks as Oklahoma’s largest sector by employment with 36,687 jobs.

Employment in most other Oklahoma industries reported losses, according to MNI, with jobs in textiles/apparel down 10.5%; food products, down 5.9%; primary metals, down 5.3%; medical instruments/related products, down 3.2%; electronics, down 1.5%; and printing/publishing, down 1.2%.

Industrial locations announcing closures included oilfield equipment manufacturer Team Oil Tools in Tulsa; commercial baker Arytza’s breadmaking facility in Vinita; cotton seed processor Producers Cooperative Mill in Oklahoma City; poultry processor Simmons Foods in Jay; and auto parts maker Federal-Mogul’s Oklahoma City site.

Losses were offset by employment gains reported in the rubber/plastics industry, up 3%; as well as the paper products sector, up 2.7%. Bright spots for the state included a recent announcement by steel company Commercial Metals Co. of its plans to build a large facility in Durant and the recent opening of a new American Building Components plant in Oklahoma City.

MNI’s regional analysis shows losses were mostly concentrated in the west of the state, with Northwest Oklahoma posting a 2.1% loss to its current level of 67,605 jobs, and the Southwest posting a 2.1% decline to 25,090 jobs. Northeast Oklahoma lost 1% of its industrial jobs and is home to the most workers at 96,327. Jobs held steady at 19,086 in Southwest Oklahoma, according to MNI data.

Industrial jobs in Tulsa remained steady over the year, with the city home to the most manufacturing jobs in the state, numbering 51,518. Oklahoma City posted a 1.3% loss, with the second-ranked city home to 46,705 jobs. Employment was down 2.8% in third-ranked Broken Arrow, which currently accounts for 6,061 jobs, while fourth-ranked Lawton accounts for 3,797 workers, down 1% over the year. Jobs fell 4.8% in fifth-ranked Enid, which currently accounts for 3,584 workers.

Detailed profiles of all Oklahoma manufacturers can be found in the 2016 Oklahoma Manufacturers Register® available in print or online. Established in 1912, Manufacturers' News, Inc. is the nation’s oldest and largest publisher of industrial information. MNI offers a variety of tailored solutions to help customers connect with 430,000 manufacturers and suppliers, from print directories to online subscriptions. MNI’s industrial database subscription service EZ Select: allows users to tap into a live interactive database of manufacturers, while its industrial search engine IndustryNet connects buyers and suppliers and allows users to view profiles and obtain competitive quotes. MNI’s traditional print directories are published for each state and include in-depth profiles of every manufacturer in the U.S. For more information, contact Manufacturers' News, Inc. 847-864-7000.
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