U.S. plastics industry shows resilience over last five years


Even as the number of people employed by the plastics industry in the U.S. declined by roughly 24% from 2005 through 2010, the total value of shipments from the sector rose by nearly one billion dollars, climbing from $301.1 billion to $302 billion, a testament to greater processor efficiency via productivity gains.

That data and more from the Society of the Plastics Industry, which released the findings of two in-depth studies: one addressing the size and impact of the U.S. plastics industry and the other examining global business trends in the plastics industry.

Bill Carteaux, SPI president and CEO, and Michael Taylor, senior director of international trade, presented a sampling of the studies' findings in a webcast, with Carteaux noting the resiliency of the U.S. plastics industry, which has recently benefitted from strong exports fueled by a weaker dollar and cost-advantaged resin produced from cheap, domestic natural gas....

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