Last updateThu, 23 May 2019 6pm


U.S. Added 20,000 Jobs in February

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased in February by 20,000 and the unemployment rate declined to 3.8%, the U.S. Department of Labor reported today. Manufacturing employment was up 4,000 in February, after increasing by an average of 22,000 per month over the prior 12 months. 

NAM Survey: Optimism Continues to Reign

Manufacturers continued to report solid growth in activity this quarter, with the sector remaining one of the brightest spots in the economy and hitting nine consecutive quarters of record optimism. As revealed in this first quarter 2019 Manufacturers’ Outlook Survey from the National Association of Manufacturers, 89.5% of respondents said they felt either somewhat or very positive about their company’s outlook, up from 88.7% in the fourth quarter of 2018. While this represents a slightly lower level of confidence overall as compared to the all-time high reading in the second quarter of 2018 (95.1%), it nonetheless continues a streak of highly elevated levels of optimism since the end of 2016. 

Manufacturing Increases at Slower Rate in February

The Institute for Supply Management’s (ISM) February PMI registered 54.2%, a decrease of 2.4% from the January reading of 56.6%, reflecting continued expanding business strength, supported by notable demand and output, although both were softer than the prior month. Demand expansion continued, with the New Orders Index reaching the mid-50s, the Customers’ Inventories Index scoring lower and remaining too low, and the Backlog of Orders returning to a low-50s expansion level. 

Empowering Women in Industry to Host Event and Gala

Empowering Women in Industry will be hosting an event and gala in Chicago on September 26, 2019. This event will be a full day of speakers, sessions, interactive workshops and an awards gala.

Our goal is to celebrate, educate, and empower women. This event will be for any woman in industry looking to connect and grow both personally and professionally.

“It is important to celebrate the accomplishments of these leading ladies in industry; they are the role models needed to build our future workforce” says Founder and CEO, Charli K. Matthews. With a broad range of session leaders, you will learn things such as Change Intelligence, Mentoring & Workforce Development, and Personal Branding & Networking. The event will close with an awards gala where we will celebrate ourselves, each other, and recognize leading ladies in the industry making a difference and effecting change. "It's such an incredible moment in time in which we live; we are in the middle of a cultural shift in which we are placing greater value on women and the skills / capabilities / value women bring to the workplace. Working with an incredible group of professionals to present and facilitate interactive workshops, I am super excited to be part of this conference, which is designed to give women in male-dominated industries recognition, networking opportunities, positive encouragement, and useful tools for their toolbox" says steering committee member, Cieana Detloff, about the initiative.

If you would like to join the community, get involved, or help sponsor the event you can visit empoweringwomeninindustry.com or contact Charli K. Matthews at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You can also nominate an empowering woman for our awards gala!  

Fourth Quarter GDP Increased 2.6%

Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 2.6% in the fourth quarter of 2018, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. In the third quarter, real GDP increased 3.4%. Real GDP increased 2.9% for the year in 2018 (from the 2017 annual level to the 2018 annual level), compared with an increase of 2.2% in 2017. 

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