How EVs are reshaping the labor market

The US added 303,000 jobs in March. Economists had been expecting 214,000. One factor that is changing the jobs landscape is the push for electric vehicles, which includes things like building the vehicles and the batteries that go in them. But with some EV makers, such as Rivian (RIVN) and Fisker (FSRN) announcing layoffs, where does the situation stand?

Yahoo Finance's Akiko Fujita takes a closer look in the video above.

For more expert insight and the latest market action, click here to watch this full episode of Yahoo Finance Live.

Editor's note: This article was written by Stephanie Mikulich.

Video Transcript



SEANA SMITH: Jobs in the manufacturing sector has largely remained flat in the first three months of the year. But now recent headlines surrounding electric vehicles, pointing to a slowdown when it comes to manufacturing in that sector. Certainly, surrounding demand with many companies pausing production in the face of slowing demand.

But the Department of Energy saying that their projections for job growth tied to EVs remains largely intact. Akiko Fujita has been digging through some of these numbers for us this morning. Hey, Akiko.

AKIKO FUJITA: Good morning to you, Seana. When we're talking about EV jobs it's not just about, EV production, the vehicle production, but also about battery production as well as EV infrastructure. We're talking about chargers and all the parts tied to that.

Now, as you pointed out, when you consider the announcements that we've gotten on layoffs over the last several months, it's hard-- it's hard to definitively say how many of those job losses have offset the gains that we have seen coming through from this accelerated transition to going electric. But I've been digging through some of these numbers based on data sets that are out there.

Now this is a number that's coming through from the Atlas Public Policy. It's put out by the nonprofit group Blue Green Alliance. They point to 228,000 jobs created. This is largely from the ramp up that we have seen in roughly 2019 EV investments coming through at $176 billion. And then if you're wondering about where the salary stands on, that 11% of those announcements coming through from unionized facilities.

That's a cumulative number and largely, you could argue, a little more conservative than the estimate that's been put out by the Department of Energy. In its most recent economic report, they pointed to clean energy vehicles creating roughly 38,200 jobs. And that is in 2022 alone. We're looking to get an update in several months on that front.

Having said that, you guys have been reporting on this, the last six months of the year the sector has seen a slew of layoffs. You had Rivian laying off roughly 900 employees so far this year. Fisker laying off 15% of the workforce. And then Lucid cutting 7% of its staff.

Now DOE's spokesperson tells me their projections that they have put out still remain largely intact and. They're talking about 130,000 jobs projected to be created as a result of the incentives that they have put in place through the Inflation Reduction Act, as well as Bipartisan Infrastructure Act. That's specifically, we're talking about 130,000 new jobs roughly with 80,000 in battery manufacturing as well as $50,000 in EV's components and chargers.

So guys, a fast-moving target here, if you will, just given the slew of announcements that we've continued to hear from these carmakers.

MADISON MILLS: All right. Akiko, thank you so much, as always, for bringing us that fantastic report. Really appreciate it.