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2018 Tennessee Manufacturing Trends

02/06/2018  |  By: John Mark McDougal, CPA, Shareholder, Practice Leader Audit and Advisory

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There is much to be learned, and even celebrated, when looking at this year’s Manufacturing and Distribution trends in Tennessee compared to the nation.  In almost every category, and those that would carry the general label of “business optimism”, Tennessee executives rank our state’s business outlook higher than the national averages.  Makes you proud to be a manufacturer or distributor in our state, doesn’t it? 

What drives ratings like this?

  • The state’s political/tax climate- Tennessee is generally viewed as being business friendly

  • The economic growth our state collaboratively supports and seeks

  • Last but not least, a history of strong and positive business performance in M&D from existing Tennessee business.  

You can also throw in some thriving sub-segments within the industry such as advanced manufacturing, automotive and main-stream middle-market privately owned businesses.  Our base of M&D in the state has diversity within it, making it more recession proof than having one dominant sub-segment like other areas of the country.

While the study puts Tennessee ahead of the nation in “growth optimism”, something everyone from government to business to the state’s citizenship can be proud, this optimism comes with greater challenges than the nation’s average too. 

The challenges of work force, production, profitability and the use of technology continue to be at the forefront of business owners and financial executive’s minds.  These are evolving and take years, not days, to solve; they aren’t going away anytime soon.  But, in the end, with optimism high, a strong work force currently in place and a diverse base of M&D, Tennessee is well poised to conquer her challenges and continue to outpace the national average.