I wonder, do journalists ever read what they write?
Did you know that 27,000 workers in the manufacturing sector have lost their jobs in the past three months? No reason why you should – it hasn\’t exactly dominated the headlines.
Actually, no I didn\’t, but it doesn\’t surprise me in the least.
Despite being cold-shouldered, and despite the job losses (more than a million since 1997) UK manufacturing is not in terminal decline: far from it.
That\’s why it doesn\’t surprise me. That three month figure is bang on trend for the past decade. And why would that be?
Firms which survived the deindustrialisation of the 1970s and 1980s, or which have been set up since then, are lean and productive; annual productivity growth in UK manufacturing in the first five years of this decade has outstripped that of France, Italy, Spain and Germany.
That\’s why. Productivity in manufacturing has been rising strongly….indeed, this is something that has been going on for, ooooh, two and a half centuries or so. As this producitivty rises we need fewer workers in that sector. No surprise here at all, and the faster the productivity rises (without demand rising similarly) then the more job losses in the sector there will be.
Now if I can piece that together in three minutes on a Sunday morning why can\’t someone being paid to tell us like it is do so in the hours she had to write the article?