The United States lags behind its economic rivals in terms of the proportion of its manufacturing output that it exports.
Source: National Association of Manufacturers
When U.S. manufacturing performance is more closely examined, it becomes clear that several trends have been underway for years. As measured against the nation’s GDP, manufacturing has been flat or declining for years, but the decline is worse if the production of computers is taken away. Since the late 1990s, much of the country’s manufacturing growth has been directly attributable to making computers.