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Press Release

Employment trends in manufacturing and education and health services show a region in transition, says Cleveland Fed researcher

Examining trends in population and private employment in 17 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) in the region served by the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, Bank research analyst Matt Klesta found that:

  • Only 5 of the 17 MSAs experienced population gains from 2001 to 2012: Akron, Cincinnati, and Columbus, Ohio; Huntington, West Virginia; and Lexington, Kentucky.
  • Manufacturing employment, while rebounding slightly since the Great Recession, is still well below 2001 employment levels. Dayton and Steubenville, Ohio, were hardest hit, with declines in manufacturing employment of nearly 50 percent from 2001 to 2013.
  • Employment in education and health services, which grew even during the recession, continues to grow. However, within that sector, a sizeable portion of workers earn a wage well under the national average.

Klesta says that, historically, much of the region served by the Cleveland Fed has specialized in manufacturing, a sector that has been particularly hard hit over the past few decades as firms took advantage of cheaper labor costs overseas and adopted technology that allows for more efficient production methods—and fewer workers.

Employment in the education and health services sector, on the other hand, has grown steadily due, in part, to the transition to a more knowledge-centric economy and an aging population.

Read Employment Trends in Two Sectors Show a Region in Transition.

Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland

The Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland is one of 12 regional Reserve Banks that along with the Board of Governors in Washington DC comprise the Federal Reserve System. Part of the US central bank, the Cleveland Fed participates in the formulation of our nation’s monetary policy, supervises banking organizations, provides payment and other services to financial institutions and to the US Treasury, and performs many activities that support Federal Reserve operations System-wide. In addition, the Bank supports the well-being of communities across the Fourth Federal Reserve District through a wide array of research, outreach, and educational activities.

The Cleveland Fed, with branches in Cincinnati and Pittsburgh, serves an area that comprises Ohio, western Pennsylvania, eastern Kentucky, and the northern panhandle of West Virginia.

Media contact

Doug Campbell,, 513.218.1892