manufacturing health

S.C. manufacturing health receives an A

South Carolina was one of only five states – and the only state south of Kentucky – whose manufacturing sector received a top grade in an annual report card.

The Center for Business and Economic Research at Ball State University collaborated with the economic development group Conexus Indiana on the 2016 Manufacturing & Logistics Report Card for the United States. Along with South Carolina, the states receiving an A for manufacturing industry health were Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky and Michigan.

“To measure manufacturing industry health, we include three variables: the share of total income earned by manufacturing employees in each state, the wage premium paid to manufacturing workers relative to the other states’ employees, and the share of manufacturing employment per capita,” the report card states.

The report card covered more than a half dozen other categories. The Palmetto State also received an A for global reach (measuring exports and foreign investment) and Bs for expected fiscal liability gap (bond ratings and unfunded pensions) and manufacturing sector diversification.

South Carolina’s top grades were all the same as in its 2015 report card. Its 2014 grades were also the same except for fiscal liability, which has improved from a C.

South Carolina’s other 2016 grades were as follows: logistics industry health (C-minus), human capital (D-minus), worker benefit costs (D), tax climate (C-minus), and productivity and innovation (C).

In another recent state-by-state ranking, South Carolina placed 27th overall in America’s Top States for Business 2016, which is compiled by CNBC. The television network used 60 different competitiveness measures which fell into 10 broad categories. South Carolina’s top category scores were:

  • Cost of Doing Business (19th)
  • Cost of Living (19th)
  • Workforce (20th)