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Auto Industry: The Engine That Drives The Economy
Thu, 19 Jun 2003, 22:02

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(NAPSI)—America’s automobile industry doesn’t just manufacture the passenger cars and light trucks that millions of Americans depend on for work, shopping, vacation and other mobility needs. Auto manufacturers, along with their suppliers and dealers, drive the U.S. economy, and that economic engine has more horsepower than many people realize.

No other single industry is linked to so much of U.S. manufacturing or generates so much retail business and employment, as these facts show:

• Employment: America’s automobile industry is one of the nation’s largest employers.

• Compensation: The contribution of automotive manufacturing to compensation in the private sector is estimated at $243 billion, or 5.6 percent of U.S. private sector compensation.

• Job Creation: For every worker directly employed by an automaker, nearly seven spin-off jobs are created. America’s automakers are among the largest purchasers of aluminum, copper, iron, lead, plastics, rubber, textiles, vinyl, steel and computer chips.

• GDP: More than 3.7 percent of America’s total gross domestic product (GDP) is generated by the sale and production of new light vehicles.

• Output: The U.S. automotive industry produces a higher level of output than any other single industry. When measured in constant 1996 dollars, automotive economic output increased by 47 percent during the period from 1987 to 1999.

• R&D: The auto industry invested $18.4 billion in research and development in 1997, more than any other manufacturing industry.

• Exports: Automotive exports rose from $33.4 billion in 1988 to a record $74 billion in 1997, an increase of 122 percent.

This information originates from the study, “Contribution of The Automotive Industry to the U.S. Economy,” that was prepared by the University of Michigan and the Center for Automotive Research. To learn more, visit the Web site at

What drives America’s economy? Not surprisingly, something with wheels.

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