manufacturing jobs

Manufacturing activity in New York shrank in April for the first time in four months, a sign that the strong dollar and sluggish consumer spending may be holding back factories.

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York says that its Empire State manufacturing index fell to negative 1.2 reading from a plus 6.9 in March. The latest reading is the lowest since December.

A measure of new orders fell for the third straight month to negative 6, which suggests output may remain sluggish in the coming months. A gauge of hiring, however, rose.

CNR Changchun

Like many American cities during the last half-century, Springfield, Massachusetts saw its manufacturing base that once supported the economy sharply erode.  But a new industry arrived this year that officials hope marks the start of a turnaround.

   A Chinese company that is the largest manufacturer of passenger railroad cars in the world is going to build a $55 million, 125,000-square foot factory in Springfield that could employ up to 300 people building new MBTA subway cars at the rate of four per month.

CNR Changchun

The administration of Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick is recommending a Chinese company be awarded a contract to build new subway cars for the MBTA.  The railcars will be assembled at a new factory that is to be built in Springfield.

Gov. Patrick made the announcement Tuesday standing in front of an empty 40- acre lot on Springfield’s east side,  where the CNR Changchun Railway Vehicles Co. has said it will build a $50 million factory creating over 250 new construction and manufacturing jobs.

More than 100 workers in Amsterdam, New York will lose their jobs in the coming months. One of the city’s manufacturers is closing its doors.

wikipedia commons

General Electric has announced that it will shutter its Fort Edward plant, but the union representing employees says it will fight its members’ jobs. 


Workforce development experts say Massachusetts needs more people trained for jobs in precision manufacturing.  The state is devoting money to the effort.

Springfield Technical Community College recently spent $2 million to upgrade and expand classrooms in its Mechanical Engineering Technology center.   The college received a $1.2 million dollar grant from the state. But it came with one string attached. The college had to double the number of students enrolled in the program that prepares people for careers in manufacturing.