Primary Metal Manufacturing: NAICS 331

About the Primary Metal Manufacturing subsector

The primary metal manufacturing subsector is part of the manufacturing sector.

Industries in the Primary Metal Manufacturing subsector smelt and/or refine ferrous and nonferrous metals from ore, pig or scrap, using electrometallurgical and other process metallurgical techniques. Establishments in this subsector also manufacture metal alloys and superalloys by introducing other chemical elements to pure metals. The output of smelting and refining, usually in ingot form, is used in rolling, drawing, and extruding operations to make sheet, strip, bar, rod, or wire, and in molten form to make castings and other basic metal products.

North American Industry Classification System

The primary metal manufacturing subsector consists of these industry groups:

  • Iron and Steel Mills and Ferroalloy Manufacturing: NAICS 3311
  • Steel Product Manufacturing from Purchased Steel: NAICS 3312
  • Alumina and Aluminum Production and Processing: NAICS 3313
  • Nonferrous Metal (except Aluminum) Production and Processing: NAICS 3314
  • Foundries: NAICS 3315

Workforce Statistics

This section provides information relating to employment and unemployment in primary metal manufacturing. While most data are obtained from employer or establishment surveys, information on industry unemployment comes from a national survey of households. The following tables present an overview of the industry including the number of jobs, the unemployment rate of those previously employed in the industry, data for occupations common to the industry, and projections of occupational employment change.

Employment and Unemployment

Data series Back
data
May
2016
Jun.
2016
Jul.
2016
Aug.
2016

Employment (in thousands)

 

Employment, all employees (seasonally adjusted)

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376.5 374.6 (P) 374.0 (P) 371.5

Employment, production and nonsupervisory employees (seasonally adjusted)

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294.6 293.2 (P) 293.7 (P) 290.8

Unemployment

 

Unemployment rate

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3.9% 4.2% 3.8% 4.2%

Footnotes
(P) Preliminary

(Source: Current Employment Statistics, Current Population Survey

Employment by Occupation

Data series Employment,
2015

Cutting, punching, and press machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

12,510

First-line supervisors/managers of production and operating workers

18,060

Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers

14,310

Metal-refining furnace operators and tenders

17,500

Molding, coremaking, and casting machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

13,570

Rolling machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

16,260

(Source: Occupational Employment Statistics)

Projections

For projected (future) employment estimates, see the National Employment Matrix, which includes employment estimates by industry and occupation for primary metal manufacturing.

(Source: Office of Occupational Statistics and Employment Projections)

Earnings and Hours

This section presents data on employee earnings and weekly hours. The latest industry averages of hourly earnings and weekly hours are shown. In addition, recent hourly and annual earnings are shown for occupations commonly found in primary metal manufacturing.

Earnings and Hours of All Employees

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data
May
2016
Jun.
2016
Jul.
2016
Aug.
2016

Average hourly earnings

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$25.54 $25.68 (P) $25.82 (P) $25.99

Average weekly hours

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42.6 42.8 (P) 42.9 (P) 42.5

Footnotes
(P) Preliminary

(Source: Current Employment Statistics)

Earnings and Hours of Production and Nonsupervisory Employees

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data
May
2016
Jun.
2016
Jul.
2016
Aug.
2016

Average hourly earnings

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$22.86 $23.18 (P) $23.26 (P) $23.23

Average weekly hours

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43.4 43.2 (P) 43.5 (P) 43.5

Footnotes
(P) Preliminary

(Source: Current Employment Statistics)

Earnings by Occupation

Data series Wages, 2015
Hourly Annual
Median Mean Median Mean

Cutting, punching, and press machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

16.38 16.88 34,060 35,100

First-line supervisors/managers of production and operating workers

(1) - (1) - (1) - (1) -

Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers

18.27 18.86 38,000 39,240

Metal-refining furnace operators and tenders

20.56 20.81 42,770 43,280

Molding, coremaking, and casting machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

16.33 17.05 33,980 35,470

Rolling machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

21.67 21.77 45,080 45,280

Footnotes
(1) Estimate not released.

(Source: Occupational Employment Statistics)

Work-related Fatalities, Injuries, and Illnesses

This section presents data for the industry on the number of workplace fatalities and the rates of workplace injuries and illnesses per 100 full-time workers in primary metal manufacturing. An injury or illness is considered to be work-related if an event or exposure in the work environment either caused or contributed to the resulting condition or significantly aggravated a pre-existing condition.

Data series 2011 2012 2013 2014

Fatalities

 

Number of fatalities

24 24 17 28

Blank cells indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria.

Data series 2014

Rate of injury and illness cases per 100 full-time workers

 

Total recordable cases

5.2

Cases involving days away from work, job restriction, or transfer

2.9

Cases involving days away from work

1.2

Cases involving days of job transfer or restriction

1.6

Blank cells indicate no data reported or data that do not meet publication criteria.

(Source: Injuries, Illnesses, and Fatalities)

Prices

This section provides industry-specific pricing information. The producer price index measures the percentage change in prices that domestic producers receive for goods and services. The prices included in the producer price index are from the first commercial transaction. The import price index reflects the percentage change in prices paid to foreign producers for their goods and services within the U.S., while the export price index measures the percentage change in prices received by U.S. producers for goods and services sold outside the U.S.

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May
2016
Jun.
2016
Jul.
2016
Aug.
2016

Producer price index

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(P) 174.9 (P) 175.4 (P) 179.1 (P) 179.4

Percent change from previous month

  (P) 2.2% (P) 0.3% (P) 2.1% (P) 0.2%

Import index

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127.5 (R) 126.2 (R) 132.6 134.7

Percent change from previous month

  4.1% (R) -1.0% (R) 5.1% (R) 1.6%

Export index

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134.6 (R) 131.5 138.1 138.6

Percent change from previous month

  2.4% (R) -2.3% (R) 5.0% 0.4%

Footnotes
(R) Revised
(P) Preliminary

(Source: Producer Price Indexes, International Price Program)

Workplace Trends

This section presents data on the number of establishments in primary metal manufacturing. Also included in this section is information on productivity, presented as the rate of change in output per hour of workers in the industry.

Establishments

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data
2nd quarter
2015
3rd quarter
2015
4th quarter
2015
1st quarter
2016

Number of establishments

 

Private industry

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5,530 5,574 5,559 (P) 5,518

Footnotes
(P) Preliminary

(Source: Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages)

Productivity

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2012 2013 2014 2015

Labor productivity index, output per hour

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109.009 114.211 111.339 108.039

Percent change from previous year

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2.0 4.8 -2.5 -3.0

Labor index, total labor hours

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90.694 89.021 91.257 88.026

Percent change from previous year

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1.4 -1.8 2.5 -3.5

Output index

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98.865 101.672 101.605 95.102

Percent change from previous year

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3.4 2.8 -0.1 -6.4

Unit labor costs index

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106.881 104.272 104.905 111.152

Percent change from previous year

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2.8 -2.4 0.6 6.0

(Source: Productivity and Costs)

Other BLS Resources

Career Guide to Industries

See steel manufacturing in the Career Guide to Industries.

 

Data extracted on: September 20, 2016