Bureau of Business Research


Date of this Version



Business in Nebraska vol. 56, no. 653


Copyright 2000 by Bureau of Business Research, University of Nebraska.


Manufacturing is defined as a basic industry, 'one that brings external dollars to a state's economy. Nebraska's manufacturing industry has strong ties to the state's agriculture and agribusiness industries. Therefore, manufacturing firms often are considered desk· able targets of state and regional economic development efforts.

This analysis profiles employment and wage trends in Nebraska's manufacturing industry over a 25-yearperiod, with particular attention to the food processing and machinery sectors, the largest manufacturing employers in the state. The objective of the analysis is to explore the relationship between trends in the manufacturing industry and the livable wage levels presented in a n earlier issue of Business in Nebraska. Data from the U.S. Census of Manufacturers form the basis of the analysis. This census is conducted every five years (most recently in 1997) by the U.S. Census Bureau.

Trends-1972 to 1997

Value-Added, Value of Shipments, and Wages

Comparison of Hourly Manufacturing Wages to Livable Wages