Fiat Chrysler ($FCAU) just announced that it will invest $4.5 billion in U.S. factories that manufacture Jeeps and Ram trucks. It claims that the move will create 6,500 jobs which, according to job job-listing trends that we track for Fiat Chrysler, are already being opened.
Towards the end of the chart, we see an overall jump in Fiat Chrysler job openings, specifically a 4.53% increase from February 20 to February 26. This bucks the trend Fiat had last year when the number of job openings on its platform dwindled until it hit a springtime crater. This came when Fiat Chrysler overtook rival General Motors ($GM) in profits for the first time in over a decade.
The specific terms of Fiat Crysler's $4.5 billion investment includes converting the Mack Avenue engine plant in Detroit to a manufacturing plant for Jeep. This will make it the first new manufacturing plant in Detroit in several decades. Upgrades will also be made at a Sterling Heights facility.
As of February 25, Fiat Chrysler has the most job openings in Auburn Hills, also known as the site of the company's headquarters. A large gap in job openings due to the number of corporate positions it is offering separates it from Detroit, currently the city with the second-most job openings.
Number of Job Openings on Feb. 25
|Auburn Hills, MI, US||429|
|Detroit, MI, US||63|
|Toledo, OH, US||34|
|Kokomo, IN, US||32|
|Corbetta, Lombardia, IT||28|
|Modena, Emilia-Romagna, IT||28|
|Chelsea, MI, US||23|
|Sterling Heights, MI, US||23|
|Belvidere, IL, US||22|
|Toluca, México, MX||20|
A tale of two (Michigan) cities
Around this time last year, there were 37 job openings in Detroit. Today, that number has nearly doubled, which may be due to the investments Fiat is putting into the Motor City.
Most of these jobs are for Manufacturing-related jobs, which is in line with the company's desire to product more Jeeps and Rams. In fact, eight out of the top-ten job categories with openings in Detroit right now are for, or related to, different parts of manufacturing at various Detroit factories.
Number of Job Openings on Feb. 25
|Manufacturing-Supply Chain Management||9|
|Manufacturing-Summer Vacation Replacement||6|
|Product Design & Engineering-Powertrain||4|
|Sales & Marketing-Sales & Marketing||3|
|Information Technology-Information Communication Technology||2|
While there has been a steady increase in Detroit job openings over time for Fiat Chrysler, the same cannot be said for Sterling Heights. Here, the number of job openings has surprisingly decreased over time, but not by much.
In early June 2018, Fiat Chrysler was looking to fill 32 positions in Sterling Heights. As of February 25, it had 23 openings that were tied to this location.
Granted, the amount of investment appropriated for the Sterling Heights plant, which is used for stamping and is a suburb of Detroit, is far less than what is being given to various Detroit plants. The plan that Fiat Chrysler laid out was $400 million in improvements for the Sterling Heights and Warren stamping plants, while factories that are considered to be located in Detroit-proper will receive over a billion dollars.
A decline of jobs in Saltillo, Mexico... Despite continued production
Fiat Chrysler's investment also includes reversing a decision to bring manufacturing on an all-new Ram truck from Mexico to the States. The company will continue to build this truck in Saltillo, Mexico, which all comes in the shadow of other jobs being brought to the states.
Last year, President Donald Trump personally Tweeted out his approval for Fiat Chrysler "leaving Mexico."
While Chrysler will continue to manufacture trucks in Mexico, the number of job openings on its careers website for positions at this factory have fluctuated over time, but have had an overall decrease.
There was also plenty of fluctuation in overall Mexico-based jobs, which cratered on April 4, 2018. Since then, the number of Fiat Chrysler job openings has increased over time, but technically dropped between September 2018 and today.