Manufacturing Renaissance in the Rust Belt?

Subtitle: 
Hiring is up in the rust belt. Could tried and true American manufacturing bring back America’s economy?

Case Western Reserve economist and EPRN researcher Susan Helper was a guest on Tom Ashbrook's "On Point" May 24 NPR radio interview-call-in show.

Here's Ashbrook's lead-in to the show: "After years of downsizing and off-shoring, 'American manufacturing' has come to sound like an oxymoron to a lot of Americans. But the buzz this season is about a manufacturing renaissance. Factories opening, reopening. New production lines. More work. While the overall U.S. economy grew 1.9 percent in the first quarter, manufacturing grew more than 9 percent. A “shining star” they’re calling it. Of course, that growth is from a battered baseline. And the wages now? Way down. But still … This hour On Point: the buzz, again, around American manufacturing, and what’s really going on."

Other guests on the show were Peter Coy, economics editor and senior writer for Bloomberg Businessweek; Thomas Runiewicz, economist with the U.S. industry practice of IHS Global Insight; and Ben Suarez, founder and CEO of Suarez Corp. Industries.