Printing Industry Growth Expected to Continue

Article excerpt

Oklahoma's printing industry has a strong base with $560 million in sales and the capability to expand based on the availability of a labor force, said Ron H. Davis, chief economist and director of research for Printing Industries of America.

Davis expects 3.3 percent growth in 1989.

"Printing and publishing has been a thriving industry in Oklahoma over the past few years," Davis said. It is ranked seventh in Oklahoma among manufacturing industries.

More than 1,200 firms in Oklahoma are involved in printing and publishing, employing 5,527 people. The typical firm employs about 15 people and has sales of $900,000, Davis said.

Figures from the U.S. Department of Commerce show that the industry's output in Oklahoma increased 15 percent from 1982 to 1988. This took place while manufacturing overall experienced a 21 percent drop in production, he said.

"We expect this growth to continue in the years ahead," he said.

In 1988-1989, the output in Oklahoma increased 2.7 percent, compared to an average of 9.6 percent for the United States.

"The regional economy has had some problems," Davis said, "but those seem to be behind you."

The oil and gas industry has realigned itself more toward marketing and away from production, Davis said.

The area has a pool of labor, which will be important as the nation moves into a labor shortage era, and moderate priced housing, which are attractive to employers.

Oklahoma needs to create the perception that things are happening here and the rebound has come about, he said. …