While the sector has gained 613,000 manufacturing jobs in the past two years, and now stand at 11,9670,000 employment, when looking back to 2002, the U.S. is still down by 3.5 million manufacturing jobs.
In the labor report released on Friday, the manufacturing sector lost 15,000 jobs.
A decline in motor vehiclesand parts (-8,000) partially offset a gain in July, the Labor Department said.
Auto manufacturers laid off fewer workers for factory retooling than usual in July, and fewer workers than usual were recalled in August.
Looking over the past year years the sector has gained 512,000 manufacturing jobs and now stands at 11,9670,000 employment.
However compared to 2002, which saw its highest level of employment at 15, 475,000, employment is down by 3.5 million manufacturing jobs.
Commenting on the overall condition of manufacturing employment, Scott Paul, executive director of the Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM) praised President Obama for outlining a goal of creating 1 million new manufacturing jobs by 2016.
"I’m glad the President believes in manufacturing, but this jobs report shows just how much work must be done to create those jobs," Scott said. "We are headed in the wrong direction, at least temporarily, after 31 pretty good months for manufacturing.
"We look forward to hearing exactly what Mitt Romney and President Obama propose to do to strengthen manufacturing in the weeks ahead. And, we call on Congress to pass legislation to deter China’s currency manipulation, which has contributed to the loss of nearly 3 million American jobs over the past decade."