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First Look at the State of Manufacturing

June 9, 2016
The IndustryWeek U.S. 500 provides a snapshot of U.S. industrial strength—or weakness.

As big oil goes, so goes manufacturing—at least among the largest public manufacturers in America.

The 62 companies representing the industry on the IndustryWeek U.S. 500 posted a whopping 34.3% drop in revenue, to $1.05 trillion, a big reason the list’s total revenue dropped from nearly $6 trillion to $5.38 trillion.

The IndustryWeek U.S. 500 is IW’s exclusive annual ranking of America’s largest public manufacturers, based on revenue.

Last year, the oil industry landed five companies in the top 10; this year, only three. Exxon Mobil Corp., which continues its 14-year reign atop the list, reported a 34.7% revenue drop from the previous year. Still, that’s not as bad as declines reported by over half of the oil industry companies on the list.  

Chevron Corp. dropped from No. 2 to No. 5, with a revenue decline of 34.67%, while Phillips 66 slid to 8th from 4th, with a revenue drop of 38.48%. Valero Energy Corp. (from 8th to 11th) and Marathon Petroleum Corp. (10th to 15th) failed to make the top ten.

The oil companies, however, had plenty of company. Nineteen of the 28 industries on the list reported revenue declines, including double-digit percentage drops from the following:

                Electrical Equipment – 14.63% to $207.3 billion (20 companies)

                Machinery – 14.86% to $247.4 billion (39 companies)

                Primary Metals – 12.81% to $111.7 billion (14 companies)

Four Dominant Industries

Only one of the top four industries (by number of companies in the ranking) grew. The 57-company strong computers and electronics industry grew revenue by 5.62% to $869.2 billion.

Meanwhile, the chemical industry, with 52 companies on the list, accounted for $415.1 billion in revenue, an 8.67% decline from the previous year.

Growing Industries

Only one industry, the wood products industry, posted a double-digit revenue increase. At 10.9%, the often overlooked industry contributed $20.3 billion to the total.

The next two closest industries include apparel, with a 6.13% increase to $81.3 billion, and textiles, with a 5.14% increase to $13.8 billion.

Stay tuned to this page for more analysis of the 2016 IW U.S 500 ranking in the coming weeks.

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