Aerospace Defense Labor Market


US aerospace & defense labor market study

Employment outlook upbeat, reversing job losses

The US Aerospace & Defense (A&D) sector is one of the top employers and taxpayers to the US economy.

Aerospace & Defense labor market overview

Employment decreased, while wages increased
We estimate that the US A&D sector directly employed 1.23 million workers in 2014, with a payroll of $115.6 billion. This represents a decrease of 128,537 employees (9.4 percent decrease) compared to 2010, with an offsetting increase of $7.7 billion in wages (7.2 percent increase). Approximately 185,321 (-18.0 percent) jobs were lost in the defense subsector, but these losses were offset by 56,784 (17.2 percent) jobs gained in the commercial aerospace subsector. Advances in technology have led to the substitution of automation for labor, allowing the sector to become more efficient and less labor intensive.

Taxes increased, despite job losses
Sector companies paid $7.7 billion in corporate federal income taxes, as well as $4.1 billion in state and local income taxes and business taxes in 2014. This represents a $1.5 billion growth in total corporate income taxes paid since 2010, a 14.7 percent increase. Also, despite the 9.4 percent decrease in sector employment, individual income taxes in 2014 totaled $23.9 billion, an increase of 9.9 percent compared to 2010. Usually, decreased employment would commensurately affect individual federal and state income taxes paid, however despite the reduction in jobs, individual taxes increased largely due to total wage growth.

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