EY 2015 US Investment Monitor Shows Major Corporate Projects Increase Capital Investment but Create Fewer Jobs

Dec 07, 2015, 10:04 ET from EY

WASHINGTON, Dec. 7, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- US business investment projects accounted for $5 billion more in capital investment in 2014 than in 2013, but nearly 30,000 fewer jobs, according to EY's 2015 US Investment Monitor (USIM), an annual report prepared by Ernst & Young LLP's Quantitative Economics and Statistics (QUEST) and Indirect Tax Incentives practices. Nearly 5,800 projects were announced in 2014, representing more than $150 billion of mobile capital investment and more than 410,000 new and retained jobs. Industries capturing the most investment include liquid natural gas, chemical manufacturing, and non-durable manufacturing, which alone represents almost half of all capital investments in 2014 tracked by the publication.

The USIM focuses on US and foreign companies' mobile capital investments, which are not tied to specific markets or geographies. Mobile capital investments include headquarters facilities, data and call centers, manufacturing facilities, distribution centers, and research facilities, which have a wide range of location options. Companies continue to pursue locations with high supply chain potential, low input costs, strong business incentives, growing industry clusters, and advantageous state and local tax systems. Because companies research and analyze the relative merits of different locations before deciding where to invest, these mobile capital investments serve as indicators of a region's or state's long-term economic growth potential and competitiveness.

"Many factors play key roles in a company's decision to invest in a particular location, and awareness of industry trends, workforce development levels, and the availability of state and local tax incentives can help businesses decide where to locate their mobile capital investments," said Andrew Phillips, Principal of Ernst & Young LLP. "Policymakers and state business leaders should be aware of the effects that taxes, operating costs, natural resources and the nature of the local market can have on a state's economic climate."

The states that attracted the most investment were led for the third year in a row by Texas and Louisiana, with New York ranking third – its highest ranking in the past five years.

Top 10 states by capital investment:

Louisiana:  $25.9 million
Texas:  $22.3 million
New York:  $8.1 million
Missouri:  $5.8 million
Ohio:  $5.6 million
Nevada:  $5.4 million
California:  $2.8 million
Michigan:  $5 million
South Carolina:  $4.6 million
Maryland:  $4.6 million 
North Dakota:  $4.6 million

The top 10 states by the number of 2014 job announcements accounted for 54% of all new or retained jobs captured in this year's USIM, compared to 34% of current private sector employment in the United States. The jobs announced due to large mobile capital projects attracted by these states outpaced their current share of US jobs.

Top 10 states for mobile project jobs:

Texas: 33,400
North Carolina:  29,500
Ohio:  27,600
Tennessee:  24,600 
Kentucky:  19,600
Indiana:  19,100
Virginia:  17,000
Georgia:  16,700
Michigan:  16,000
Illinois:  16,000
South Carolina:  14,500

Foreign companies continue to choose the United States for major investment and job creation. Announcements of US projects by these companies represent $36 billion, or 24%, of total USIM mobile capital investment. China came in as the top investing nation, with nearly $12 billion (a third of total foreign investment), followed by Germany and Japan, with $5 billion and $4 billion in capital investment, respectively.

A copy of the study is available here: http://www.ey.com/Publication/vwLUAssets/EY-2015-us-investment-monitor/$FILE/EY-2015-us-investment-monitor.pdf

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This news release has been issued by Ernst & Young LLP, a member firm of EY serving clients in the US.

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