After promising growth in 2011 and 2012, Illinois manufacturers were left disappointed by a slowdown in 2013.
Overall, the state of Illinois lost more than 4,000 manufacturing jobs last year. Mark Denzler of the Illinois Manufacturer's Association says that's a tough pill to swallow after all the positive signs from the previous two years.
He says a drop in demand for things like mining equipment is hurting the state. He also says the continued uncertainty in Springfield regarding key budget issues isn’t helping.
But Denzler says there are still some bright spots.
“The automotive industry is doing well. The pharmaceutical and medical device industry is doing well,” Denzler said.
And Denzler says more jobs will be created once state regulators are ready for hydraulic fracturing, which could begin later this year.
Illinois’ recent struggles in manufacturing reflect what’s happening at the national level. Concerns about the sector’s slow growth sent stocks lower earlier this week.