Loss of Manufacturing Jobs Push Americans Closer to Poverty

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More Americans are finding themselves in the grip of poverty, at some point in their lives, than ever before. It's called "economic insecurity," and the unsettling fact is that it is probably going to get worse.

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A recent article by the Associated Press reveals that 80% of American adults find themselves in economic trouble during their lifetimes. This measure of economic insecurity is characterized as at least one year on public assistance, an income level 150% below the poverty line, or being unemployed for any length of time. If that isn't depressing enough, the incidence of those affected by economic hardship is expected to rise to 85% by 2015.

Not surprisingly, the primary reason given for this reduction in economic well-being is a lack of jobs -- more specifically, the decline of manufacturing jobs. As this chart from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis clearly shows, the proportion of jobs in the manufacturing sector has taken a huge hit since 1970, to the point where only a little over 10% of the population now works in that area.


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