© 2023
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Growing Manufacturing Sector Boosts Lehigh Valley GDP to Record $47 Billion | WDIY Local News

Sarit Laschinsky
A look inside Mack Trucks' Lower Macungie assembly plant in July 2021, during a visit by President Joe Biden to the facility to tout American manufacturing.

Manufacturing was the biggest part of the Lehigh Valley’s economy last year. That’s according to new data. WDIY’s Sarit Laschinsky has more.

The Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corp. says the region’s manufacturing output hit $8.4 billion and has become the biggest contributor to the Lehigh Valley’s gross domestic product.

In a recent statement, the LVEDC said new data released by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis showed that manufacturing helped push the region’s GDP to a record $47 billion in 2021.

The GDP rose by 6.4% from 2020 to 2021, after factoring in inflation.

The agency also said manufacturing has overtaken finance, insurance, and real estate as the top GDP contributor. Manufacturing made up 18% of the Lehigh Valley’s private sector output last year, compared to 12% in the nation overall.

The local manufacturing economy is among the top 15 of the U.S. metro regions ranked in 2021, according to the release. Last year, the Lehigh Valley ranked among the top 50 markets for production of food, medical supplies and other non-durable goods

Besides manufacturing, the LVEDC said the largest contributors to the region’s GDP are:

  • Finance, insurance and real estate ($8.1 billion)
  • Educational services, health care and social assistance ($6.9 billion)
  • Professional and business services ($5.9 billion)
  • Wholesale trade ($3.7 billion)
  • Information ($3 billion)
  • Retail trade ($3 billion)
  • Transportation and warehousing ($2.7 billion)

The agency said the Lehigh Valley’s private sector output is the 65th largest in the nation – larger than the states of Alaska, Vermont and Wyoming.

Additionally, if the region was a country, its economy would be the 88th largest in the world.

GDP measures the total market value of goods and services produced in a region over a year, The LVEDC tracks GDP across the Lehigh Valley’s metro region, which is made up of Lehigh, Northampton, Carbon and Warren counties.

The agency said together, Lehigh and Northampton counties make up $40.6 billion out of the $47 billion in private sector output across the entire metro region.

(Original air-date: 12/13/22)

Sarit "Siri" Laschinsky is WDIY's News and Public Affairs Director.
Related Content