|Rank||10 Largest Manufacturing Industries, 2012||Revenue (Millions)||Examples|
|1||Petroleum & Coal Products||$1,629,494||Exxon, Chevron, Conoco|
|2||Computers & Other Electronic Products||$814,172||HP, IBM, Apple|
|3||Chemicals||$441,233||P&G, Dow, DuPont|
|4||Food||$387,855||General Mills, Kellogg, Campbell|
|5||Motor Vehicles||$333,693||Ford, GM, Harley-Davidson|
|6||Pharmaceuticals||$317,763||J&J, Pfizer, Merck|
|7||Machinery||$263,840||Caterpillar, Deere, Xerox|
|8||Aerospace & Defense||$260,360||Boeing, Lockheed Martin|
|9||Electrical Equipment & Appliances||$248,864||GE, Emerson, Whirlpool|
|10||Motor Vehicle Parts||$137,552||Johnson Controls, Cummins, TRW|
IndustryWeek recently released its annual ranking of the 500 largest publicly held US. manufacturing companies in 2012 based on sales revenue, and the top ten US manufacturing industries (of 27 total industries for the Top 500 companies) are displayed above. To put US manufacturers sales revenue into perspective, here are some comparisons to international GDP values that help give context to the enormity of those sales figures:
1. The combined sales revenue (including global sales) of the top 500 US-based manufacturing firms in 2012 was $6.01 trillion, which was a 17.2% increase over 2011 sales of $5.13 trillion. To put those sales in perspective, if those 500 US manufacturers were considered as a separate country, their revenue last year of $6.01 trillion would have ranked as the world’s third’s largest economy behind No. 1 US and No. 2 China, and slightly ahead of No. 4 Japan’s entire GDP of $5.98 trillion in 2012.
2. The sales revenue from the top ten US manufacturing industries totaled $4.83 trillion in 2012 (see chart above), which was 44% more than Germany’s entire GDP of $3.36 trillion last year.
3. Annual sales of $1.62 billion in 2012 for America’s single largest manufacturing industry – petroleum and coal products – was larger than the GDP of Australia last year of $1.54 trillion, and almost as much as Canada’s $1.77 trillion in GDP in 2012.
4. Annual sales of $814 billion for America’s second largest manufacturing industry – computers and other electronic products was more than the entire GDP last year of Turkey ($770 billion) and Saudi Arabia ($657 billion).
5. The top ten largest U.S. manufacturing companies (Exxon, Conoco, Chevron, GM, GE, Ford, H-P, Valero, Apple, and IBM) had combined revenues of $1.87 trillion, more than Canada’s GDP in 2012 of $1.77 trillion and almost as much as the entire GDP of India ($1.94 trillion).
MP: The comparisons above help put the enormous size of the top 500 U.S. manufacturing firms into perspective and demonstrate that American manufacturers are not withering and disappearing, but thriving, expanding and prospering. In 2011, US manufacturing companies as a group had their best year ever in terms of after-tax profits by far, with almost $600 billion in after-tax earnings according to the Department of Commerce. Based on data through the third quarter of 2012, manufacturing profits will likely slip in 2012 to about $570 billion, but that will still be the second-best year ever for manufacturing profits, and almost 30% above the pre-recession level of $442 billion in 2007. Despite the persistent rumors of its pending demise, American manufacturing companies are alive and well, and getting better every year.
Note: Even though dollars of corporate sales revenues are not directly comparable to dollars of economic output as calculated for purposes of GDP, these comparisons are being used illustratively to put the trillions of dollars of manufacturing sales into some perspective.