US manufacturers register competitive decline

A decline in the international competitiveness of US manufacturing companies is not confined to a few industries, as is commonly thought, but involves about half of all industries, according to a study by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The study measured the trends in trade-competiveness of 284 manufacturing industries from 1972 to 1979.

The sectors having the most significant competitive losses are textiles, apparel, lumber and wood products, furniture, certain types of paper, rubber products, zinc and copper, some fabricated metal products, certain machinery industries, and such miscellaneous products as sporting goods, musical instruments, fasteners, games, and toys.

The major gainers are food and kindred products, chemicals and plastics, petroleum refining, mineral products, some machinery sectors, computers and office machinery, electric industrial apparatus, electronic components, and communications equipment.

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