The US economy has come a long way since the mid-to-late 2000s, when the daily news was more depressing than the Detroit Lions' playoff hopes. Need proof of that? A recent report from The Detroit News says it all - auto employment has hit a five-year high, and the sector now employs more people than it did in September of 2008.

3,400 new jobs were added in the auto sector last month, while overall employment is up to 846,400, an increase of 47,000 jobs compared to last year, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Dealers riding on strong sales, meanwhile, have added 42,000 jobs over the past 365 days, with dealership employment sitting at 1.16 million.

Despite these promising stats, The News points out that auto employment is still down compared to 2006, when 1.1 million people were employed. Still, it's good to see a recovery of any sort in our industry. Let's just hope it continues.


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  • 32 Comments
      dadslife83
      • 10 Months Ago
      This is great news. As a victim of manufacturing distribution decline and NAFTA (Thanks, Bill Clinton!) in the PC industry, my job is still being performed in Taiwan.
        cpmanx
        • 10 Months Ago
        @dadslife83
        I don't understand. How did NAFTA affect a job that was outsourced to Taiwan?
          dadslife83
          • 10 Months Ago
          @cpmanx
          NAFTA was an experiment, establishing a radically new “trade” agreement model. NAFTA was fundamentally different than past trade agreements in that it was only partially about trade. Indeed, it shattered the boundaries of past U.S. trade pacts, which had focused narrowly on cutting tariffs and easing quotas. In contrast, NAFTA created new privileges and protections for foreign investors that incentivized the offshoring of investment and jobs by eliminating many of the risks normally associated with moving production to low-wage countries. NAFTA allowed foreign investors to directly challenge before foreign tribunals domestic policies and actions, demanding government compensation for policies that they claimed undermined their expected future profits. NAFTA also contained chapters that required the three signatory countries to limit regulation of services, such as trucking and banking; extend medicine patent monopolies; limit food and product safety standards and border inspections; and waive domestic procurement preferences, such as Buy American policies. NAFTA was sold to the U.S. public in 1993 with grand promises. The deal would create hundreds of thousands of good jobs here – 170,000 per year according the Peterson Institute for International Economics. U.S. farmers would export their way to wealth. NAFTA would bring Mexico to a first-world level of economic prosperity and stability, providing new economic opportunities that would reduce immigration to the United States. Environmental standards would improve. Twenty years later, the grand projections and promises made by NAFTA’s proponents remain unfulfilled. Many outcomes are exactly the opposite of what was promised, as detailed in this report. http://www.citizen.org/documents/NAFTA-at-20.pdf Like all legislation, the public summary reveals nothing of the meat of the bill.
      nocommie11
      • 10 Months Ago
      More lazy wrench monkeys putting wheels on for 80k a year, yay. Replace them all with robots and quality will go up, car prices may come down, and no more bailouts.
        Alfonso T. Alvarez
        • 10 Months Ago
        @nocommie11
        You must be a load of fun at parties! What, you never get invited to parties? I wonder why??
        darkness
        • 10 Months Ago
        @nocommie11
        ^Such a pathetic excuse for a human being, nothing and I do mean NOTHING is worse than a jealous B#tch.
        • 10 Months Ago
        @nocommie11
        [blocked]
        rsholland
        • 10 Months Ago
        @nocommie11
        And all those workers you've so casually laid off, any plans for them? No, I didn't think so.
          mycommentemail
          • 10 Months Ago
          @rsholland
          Clearly it is their own fault for being, um, something. FIrst we lay em off. Then we cut their unemployment. Then we castigate them for being poor and lazy. Lather, rinse, repeat. Of course, there will be much gnashing of teeth and surprise when nobody buys anything anymore. But that's what shooting yourself in the foot is all about. Ok teabaggers! Downvote away!
      • 10 Months Ago
      [blocked]
      miles
      • 10 Months Ago
      What's the deal with some people putting down the idea that we have more good-paying jobs? Such sad little people...
        flammablewater
        • 10 Months Ago
        @miles
        It really is sad when you can't look past your own politics and be happy that good things are happening in your country, just because you don't like the guy of charge who has, overall, VERY LITTLE to do with those good things.
      AngeloD
      • 10 Months Ago
      Nice pro-Obama propaganda piece. I wouldn't have expected anything less from the Huffington Post-AOL. This article merely chooses a starting point and ending point in time that makes the auto sector employment look good. The stats for 2008 show the US well into the start of the recession where hundreds of thousands had been laid off. Move the goal post back to 2006 and we are still well short of a full recovery. The best measure of unemployment in the US is the employment rate of the population. This is still down to 58%, which is a 30 year low according to CNN. This number hasn't budged at all since 2008. It is as low today as it has been since Obama was elected. Real unemployment in the US is at approx. 13% if the old U6 measure were still being used as it was for 70 years. U6 counts unemployed and part-timers who want full time work. The "Official" unemployment rate reported by the Obama administration conveniently fails to include the millions of Americans who's unemployment benefits have run out or who have become so discouraged that they have given up looking for work. Put this together with the 2.5 million jobs the Congressional Budget Office estimates ObamaCare will cost the US over the next 5 years and the outlook for unemployment in the US looks grim.
        flammablewater
        • 10 Months Ago
        @AngeloD
        Where in this 3 paragraph article do you see the words Obama, or Democrat, or bailout? You're projecting some weird hatred out there for no reason. Just be happy that things are getting built in America again. Do you hate the president so much that you can't just be happy that more people are employed? It sounds like you have some deeper anger issues, and you might talk to someone about it.
        mikeybyte1
        • 10 Months Ago
        @AngeloD
        This is an article that specifically points out that Auto Jobs have increased from 2008. And your argument is to counter with national unemployment statistics? You are comparing two different things. This is about CAR JOBS. On an AUTO site. Go post your political hate elsewhere. This is great news for the American auto workers. If you can't appreciate that, then please leave the country.
        N.O.
        • 10 Months Ago
        @AngeloD
        Reality has a "pro-Obama" bias, down with it!
        Alfonso T. Alvarez
        • 10 Months Ago
        @AngeloD
        Actually your attack is worthless (and cynical). Here's the 'facts': Auto industry employment is growing steadily and has achieved a level above what it was in 2008. In no way, shape or form is that 'bad' news or 'spin'. It isn't the highest it has ever been, but is far, far closer than it was and growing steadily. You see, normal people will see this as a positive, a nattering nabob of negativism (that would be you) can only see what you want to see and will twist 'facts' to meet your sad and pathetic view of the world. Got it? Good.
        Wetstuff
        • 10 Months Ago
        @AngeloD
        Hey Angelo... What crop of draft dodging azzoles was in charge before 2008 when we got attacked and encouraged people with no income buy MacMansions? You should be thankful Obama has no stones. If he were Johnson he'd have his people out all those weirdoes and biblical goofballs that run the other party for the bought-n-paid for crooks they are. Virginia got so embarrassed by their governor, they now "limit" meals that lobbyists can buy a POL to $250. ...face it: D or R - they're all a pack of crooks and/or goofballs.
        MintzBuck
        • 10 Months Ago
        @AngeloD
        I just want to point out the source article is from the Detroit News, which is typically the right leaning newspaper in Detroit.
        gargoyle
        • 10 Months Ago
        @AngeloD
        CBO said no such thing--rather it said that 2.5 million people will no longer be trapped in a job they don't want due to their lack of affordable insurance options. Get it straight teaparty fanboy.
      b.rn
      • 10 Months Ago
      Wasn't the job level pretty low before the recession? Isn't that one of the reasons we had a recession? It's good to see that they're up, but the headline suggests it's great. The reality is we're up to the level that helped begin the recession. Good news, but not great.
        Klimo
        • 10 Months Ago
        @b.rn
        You think the recession happened bc of low total employment of auto workers?? And you you think we are headed to another recession bc auto employment is up to previous historically low employment?? Sheesh you are dumb
          b.rn
          • 10 Months Ago
          @Klimo
          I said none of those things. Reread my post.
          axiomatik
          • 10 Months Ago
          @Klimo
          re-reading it doesn't help, your post still doesn't make sense. But to answer your question, no, employment levels are not what caused the recession. The recession was caused by a 6-8 year-long bubble in the housing market, and when the combination of high gas prices and resetting adjustable-rate mortgages put the squeeze on people's monthly budgets, they started to default on their mortgages, which caused a panic at the world's banks when they realized how heavily leveraged they were in mortgage-backed securities, which set off a financial crisis, which caused the recession.
      Nick Allain
      • 10 Months Ago
      Weak dollar = more engineering here. Easy math.
      cpmanx
      • 10 Months Ago
      The numbers are especially encouraging given the long-term trend toward higher productivity and lower employment in manufacturing. I doubt we will ever again see pre-2006 job levels in the auto sector, no matter how well the industry does. And to those trying to make this story into something it is not: The numbers are not a read on the total US economy, just on the auto sector, as you might be able to deduce from the headline. The numbers do reflect well on the overall health of the US auto industry in the aftermath of the bipartisan bailout (which was enacted by both the Bush and Obama administrations).
      RSS007
      • 10 Months Ago
      Well, that's great! I got a degree in auto engg, and I still can't get a job in the auto industry. This is not uplifting for me.
        Alfonso T. Alvarez
        • 10 Months Ago
        @RSS007
        What, exactly, is a degree in auto engg? I know BSEE, BSME, BSCE, etc. Don't know that one .. Around here in SE Michigan, there are plenty engineering jobs waiting to be filled.
      inktownlegend
      • 10 Months Ago
      There may be more jobs but what kind of jobs are they? As someone that works for a contractor for one of the Big3 I have noticed that most new employees are not actually employees of the Big3, they are contracted out. The employees where I work average about $28.00 per hour with the new hires getting about $15. However there are not many new hires, just new contractors that get about $10.00 to do the same job. Try working next to someone getting up to three times as much an hour for the same job. One example is the plant that I work at has outsourced part inspection/quality control to people getting $9.00 and it has caused multiple recalls over the years (the vehicles don't make it to the dealers but still have to be fixed by Big3 employees getting time and a half or double time or the costs of transporting these vehicles back and forth for repairs) so they cant be saving that much money if any. I support/supported Obama but damn, it seems as if its a race to the bottom.....
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