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Manufacturers: Tax Hikes Will Cost Manufacturing Jobs

9 in 10 Manufacturers say higher taxes would make it more difficult to raise employee wages, invest in new equipment and hire more workers

Washington, D.C. – National Association of Manufacturers President and CEO Jay Timmons released this statement following U.S. Department of Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo’s address to the City Club of Cleveland:

“Secretary Raimondo correctly notes that ‘too many Americans feel like they’ve been left behind,’ but returning to archaic tax policies of the past would set Americans back even further. Manufacturers kept their promises to raise wages and invest in their communities after the 2017 tax reform law. Why would anyone want to undo that progress?

“The proposed tax increases would result in 1 million job losses in just the first two years. Manufacturers agree with Secretary Raimondo that we want to give ‘all American workers an opportunity to participate in our economy,’ and we believe in building an opportunity society. But we need continued strong job creation to make that possible—especially as we continue to battle COVID-19.

“The right approach is a bipartisan one—just as President Biden and senators from both parties achieved on infrastructure. Smart investments that don’t impose job-destroying tax increases is the path forward. Lawmakers who choose the more destructive path—the one that jeopardizes family-supporting American manufacturing jobs—will need to explain why they want to undo our historic progress. In 2020, President Biden called on U.S. manufacturing to be ‘part of the Arsenal of Prosperity today.’ We are committed to answering that call, but we need the tools—including competitive tax rates—to achieve that goal.”

Manufacturers on Increasing the Tax Burden:

(Source: NAM’s Q3 Manufacturers’ Outlook Survey)

  • Nearly 94% of manufacturers said that higher taxes would be harmful to their businesses.
  • Roughly 90% of respondents said that their company would find it more difficult to expand their workforce, invest in new equipment or expand facilities if the tax burden on income from manufacturing activities increased.
  • Nearly 91% said that higher taxes would also make it more difficult to raise employee wages.

Background on manufacturing growth following the enactment of 2017 tax reform:

  • In 2018, manufacturers added 263,000 new jobs. That was the best year for job creation in manufacturing in 21 years.
  • In 2018, manufacturing wages increased 3% and continued going up—by 2.8% in 2019 and 3% in 2020. Those were the fastest rates of annual growth since 2003.
  • Manufacturing capital spending grew 4.5% and 5.7% in 2018 and 2019, respectively.
  • Overall, manufacturing production grew 2.7% in 2018, with December 2018 being the best month for manufacturing output since May 2008.


The National Association of Manufacturers is the largest manufacturing association in the United States, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Manufacturing employs more than 12.3 million men and women, contributes $2.35 trillion to the U.S. economy annually and has the largest economic multiplier of any major sector and accounts for 58% of private-sector research and development. The NAM is the powerful voice of the manufacturing community and the leading advocate for a policy agenda that helps manufacturers compete in the global economy and create jobs across the United States. For more information about the NAM or to follow us on Twitter and Facebook, please visit www.nam.org

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