Area manufacturing jobs hit hard by pandemic

"Welding" by John Kline, License

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO): The manufacturing sector in northeast Indiana was hit particularly hard by the pandemic last year.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, nationwide factory jobs dropped by almost 7% between July 2019 and July 2020.

But for this region, it was a nearly 9% drop, with more than 7,000 jobs lost after factories shut down in the second quarter of the year because of the spread of COVID-19.

Purdue Fort Wayne Community Research Institute Director Rachel Blakeman tells the Journal Gazette either “the virus itself or… economic uncertainties spooked people from re-engaging with the economy last summer.”

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