2013 US Investment Monitor
Tracking mobile capital investments during 2012
Welcome to the eighth edition of the US Investment Monitor (USIM). The USIM focuses on companies’ mobile capital investments, which are not tied to specific markets or geographies. Mobile capital investments include headquarters, data and call centers, manufacturing facilities, distribution centers and research facilities.
Companies investing in these types of facilities are free 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 significantly research and analyze the relative merits of different locations, these mobile capital investments serve as indicators of a region’s or state’s long-term economic growth potential and competitiveness. The companies’ investment decisions also help shape the economic development strategies of state policymakers.
Nearly 5,500 business investment announcements in 2012 are analyzed in this edition of the USIM. Together, they accounted for $168 billion of capital investment in business facilities and 350,200 new and retained jobs. These projects reflect the changing demands of US consumers and industries: faster and smaller computer and mobile phone chips, cleaner and more efficient sources of energy, and corporate headquarters and data centers to support growth across the entire economy.
- Projects announced in 2012 accounted for $168 billion of mobile capital investment and 350,200 new and retained jobs in the US.
- The 10 states that were most successful in attracting mobile capital investment – led by Texas, Louisiana and Pennsylvania – accounted for 65% of total capital investment announced during 2012. The 10 states that saw the largest number of announced new or retained jobs accounted for 56% of all jobs monitored in this year’s USIM.
- This year’s USIM is evidence that the US remains an attractive location for mobile foreign investment. Announcements of US projects by foreign companies represent over $42 billion, or 25% of all mobile capital investment and over 64,400 new and retained jobs. This was a repeat of 2011, when mobile investment by foreign companies also equaled 25% of the total mobile investment.
- Companies from Japan, Germany, France and the UK maintained their historical roles as top investors, and were joined by companies from South Africa, the United Arab Emirates and the Netherlands. Projects announced by foreign companies were concentrated in the semiconductor and electronic component manufacturing and chemical manufacturing industries. Together, these two industries made up 50% of all announced foreign investment.
- Despite warnings of a “jobless” manufacturing recovery in the US, manufacturing continued to be a significant source of investment and job creation, with announcements accounting for 54% of all mobile capital investment and 53% of all new or retained jobs in this year’s USIM.
- Automotive, semiconductor and machinery and fabricated metal manufacturing continued to be large sources of job creation, but smaller industries such as food and beverage manufacturing also experienced strong growth in terms of announced capital investment and new or retained jobs.
- In 2012, semiconductor manufacturing maintained its record of high investment and job announcements in the USIM. Companies announced major expansions as part of their efforts to keep up with consumer demand, and they invested in facility upgrades in order to prepare for shifts toward chips of varying sizes and uses.
- The average capital investment per announced job in 2012 was $480,000, a 19% increase over $403,000 in 2011. Chemical and petrochemical manufacturing projects are again the most capital intensive, largely due to the announcement of several fertilizer and ethylene facilities that require large capital investments and few employees.
- Investments in renewable energy made 2012 a historic year for the green economy. Wind and solar installation expenditures across the US totaled approximately $35 billion, and contributed record shares of state-by-state energy production.
- Far more than just wind and solar power generation, projects classified as “green” include energy-efficient data centers, high-tech recycling centers, and LED and hybrid vehicle manufacturing. In total, these projects in the green economy contributed to 24% of the announced capital investment in this year’s USIM.
Quantitative economics and statistics (QUEST)
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Business incentives and tax credits
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