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Minnesota Manufacturers Expect Stable Conditions in 2019

Most expect business conditions to improve or stay the same in the coming year

1/14/2019 8:56:58 AM

Shane Delaney 651-259-7236
Shane.M.Delaney@state.mn.us

Alyssa Augustine 612-204-5157 
alyssa.augustine@mpls.frb.org

ST. PAUL – Minnesota manufacturers reported mostly unchanged or improved conditions during 2018, according to an annual joint survey by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) and the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.

The 2018 Minnesota Manufacturing Business Conditions Survey also found that respondents had a split outlook on production for 2019 with 47 percent believing that production would increase and an equal percentage expecting it to remain the same.

The random sample survey of 249 Minnesota manufacturers was conducted in November.

“I am encouraged that Minnesota manufacturers are optimistic about the upcoming year," said Governor Tim Walz. "Manufacturing is an industry that impacts every corner of the state and is critical to the success of our economy."

Among the other findings of the survey:

  • 94 percent expect their employment to remain stable or go up.
  • 87 percent expect their equipment investments to go up or stay the same.
  • 94 percent of respondents anticipate growth in production or for production to stay the same.
  • 95 percent expect prices to go up or stay the same.

A special question this year inquired about the effect of U.S. tariffs and/or foreign countermeasures during the past year. The majority of manufacturers (86 percent) reported no effect from U.S. tariffs for employment, 80 percent reported no effect for investment and 77 percent reported no effect on capital expenditure. However, 55 percent reported a negative effect for cost to consumers.

The survey also found that 57 percent of manufacturers expect stable employment statewide and 51 percent anticipate the same level of corporate profits for the state. A majority of those surveyed (70 percent) expect inflation to increase.

Manufacturing supports more than 320,000 Minnesota jobs, and is the state’s largest industry by gross domestic product.

The full report is available here.

DEED is the state’s principal economic development agency, promoting business recruitment, expansion and retention, workforce development, international trade and community development. For more details about the agency and its services visit the DEED website or follow DEED on Twitter.

 Upon request, this information can be made available in alternate formats for people with disabilities by contacting the DEED Communications Office at 651-259-7161.
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