Could Apple’s Announcement Foreshadow a Boost for US Manufacturing?
In mid-January, Apple made the exciting announcement that it would be investing $5 billion in its Advanced Manufacturing Fund, supporting the American workforce and, in turn, the economy as well. This is a significant increase from the company’s initial $1 billion fund investment, which Apple leaders contributed to support American manufacturing innovation and assist foreign manufacturers in becoming established in the Unites States.
Apple executives will allocate funds from the increased investment fund to three areas, based on Apple’s a three-point investment strategy, all of which Apple leaders say will impact job creation. These areas include iPhone and Apple Store application development, direct Apple employment, as well as spending and investing more in their domestic manufacturers and suppliers.
Direct employment — Apple’s investment in American manufacturing jobs doesn’t come as a surprise as Apple already employs an estimated 84,000 people across the country. This extended commitment to participation in the American economy is part of the company’s “deep sense of responsibility” and drive to “give back to our country and the people who help make our success possible,” said Chief Executive Tim Cook in a press release.
What this looks like in practice is bringing $252 billion in foreign profits into the United States, a move that will cost the company $38 billion in repatriation taxes. This 15.5% tax rate was reduced from a prior 35% repatriation rate due to the Republican tax overhaul.
The impact on the U.S. market is expected to be quite sizable with Apple investing an estimated $30 billion in capital expenditures in the next five years. Apple leaders also plan to create up to 20,000 new jobs, some at its recently announced campus, which will house customer support services.
Apple-ications — Apple investments continue with application developments. The company is planning to offer more funding for its ConnectEd program in addition to teacher training and support for those instructing software coding as well as science, tech, engineering, arts, and math (STEAM) courses. The ConnectED program in particular offers coding training to those in underserved areas.
Supplier and manufacturer investment — As Apple leaders continue investing in U.S. jobs and training through their Advanced Manufacturing Fund, they are also investing in American manufacturers and suppliers. In fact, the company’s executives will be spending approximately $55 billion on American-manufactured and supplied products this year.
This final strategy may have the greatest potential to impact American manufacturing as Apple’s widespread demand for domestically produced supplies could offer a direct boost to electronics manufacturers. From offering additional opportunities for the next generation of application coders to investing in American employment and manufacturing, Apple may spur a new wave of interest in technology manufacturing in the United States.