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Plastics and Rubber Products Manufacturing: NAICS 326

About the Plastics and Rubber Products Manufacturing subsector

The plastics and rubber products manufacturing subsector is part of the manufacturing sector.

Industries in the Plastics and Rubber Products Manufacturing subsector make goods by processing plastics materials and raw rubber. The core technology employed by establishments in this subsector is that of plastics or rubber product production. Plastics and rubber are combined in the same subsector because plastics are increasingly being used as a substitute for rubber; however the subsector is generally restricted to the production of products made of just one material, either solely plastics or rubber.

North American Industry Classification System

The plastics and rubber products manufacturing subsector consists of these industry groups:

  • Plastics Product Manufacturing: NAICS 3261
  • Rubber Product Manufacturing: NAICS 3262

Workforce Statistics

This section provides information relating to employment and unemployment in plastics and rubber products 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
Oct.
2023
Nov.
2023
Dec.
2023
Jan.
2024

Employment (in thousands)

Employment, all employees (seasonally adjusted)

734.6 729.7 (p)727.5 (p)729.7

Employment, production and nonsupervisory employees (seasonally adjusted)

559.5 557.8 (p)555.7 (p)555.3

Unemployment

Unemployment rate

0.9% 3.0% 2.2% 5.3%

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary

(Source: Current Employment Statistics, Current Population Survey

Employment by Occupation

Data series Employment,
2022

Extruding and drawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

33,140

Extruding, forming, pressing, and compacting machine setters, operators, and tenders

22,780

First-line supervisors/managers of production and operating workers

36,510

Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers

38,120

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

89,690

Packers and packagers, hand

22,430

Team assemblers

71,900

(Source: Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics)

Projections

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

Earnings and Hours of All Employees

Data series Back
data
Oct.
2023
Nov.
2023
Dec.
2023
Jan.
2024

Average hourly earnings

$29.09 $28.95 (p)$28.95 (p)$29.12

Average weekly hours

40.4 40.4 (p)40.5 (p)40.4

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary

(Source: Current Employment Statistics)

Earnings and Hours of Production and Nonsupervisory Employees

Data series Back
data
Oct.
2023
Nov.
2023
Dec.
2023
Jan.
2024

Average hourly earnings

$24.24 $24.18 (p)$24.31 (p)$24.04

Average weekly hours

41.3 40.9 (p)41.2 (p)41.2

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary

(Source: Current Employment Statistics)

Earnings by Occupation

Data series Wages, 2022
Hourly Annual
Median Mean Median Mean

Extruding and drawing machine setters, operators, and tenders, metal and plastic

18.61 19.99 38,720 41,590

Extruding, forming, pressing, and compacting machine setters, operators, and tenders

18.43 19.43 38,330 40,410

First-line supervisors/managers of production and operating workers

29.42 30.42 61,200 63,270

Inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers, and weighers

18.41 19.67 38,300 40,920

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

17.45 18.40 36,300 38,280

Packers and packagers, hand

16.35 16.38 34,000 34,070

Team assemblers

17.08 17.62 35,530 36,640

(Source: Occupational Employment and Wage 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 plastics and rubber products 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 2019 2020 2021 2022

Fatalities

Number of fatalities

10 16 25 18

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

Data series 2022

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

Total recordable cases

3.4

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

2.2

Cases involving days away from work

1.1

Cases involving days of job transfer or restriction

1.1

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.

Data series Back
data
Oct.
2023
Nov.
2023
Dec.
2023
Jan.
2024

Producer price index

(p)250.031 (p)250.046 (p)250.761 (p)251.479

Percent change from previous month

  (p)0.0% (p)0.0% (p)0.3% (p)0.3%

Import index

131.8 131.5 (r)131.0 130.8

Percent change from previous month

  -1.2% -0.2% (r)-0.4% (r)-0.2%

Export index

134.3 134.1 134.2 134.8

Percent change from previous month

  -0.1% -0.1% 0.1% 0.4%

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary
(r) Revised

(Source: Producer Price Indexes, International Price Program)

Workplace Trends

This section presents data on the number of establishments in plastics and rubber products 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

Data series Back
data
3rd quarter
2022
4th quarter
2022
1st quarter
2023
2nd quarter
2023

Number of establishments

Private industry

13,964 14,038 (p)14,164 (p)14,235

Local government

2 2 (p)2 (p)2

State government

       

Footnotes
(p) Preliminary

(Source: Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages)

Productivity

Data series Back
data
2019 2020 2021 2022

Labor productivity index, output per hour

94.256 93.537 95.086 91.713

Percent change from previous year

-2.1 -0.8 1.7 -3.5

Labor index, total labor hours

113.008 107.001 111.236 115.846

Percent change from previous year

0.1 -5.3 4.0 4.1

Output index

106.517 100.086 105.770 106.246

Percent change from previous year

-1.9 -6.0 5.7 0.5

Unit labor costs index

117.817 126.213 126.820 140.801

Percent change from previous year

4.4 7.1 0.5 11.0

(Source: Productivity and Costs)

 

Data extracted on: March 01, 2024