Louisiana enjoyed its second straight year of manufacturing-employment gains, according to data from Manufacturers' News Inc.
Louisiana gained 5,685 manufacturing jobs from May 2012 to May 2013, according to Manufacturers' News, which publishes industrial directories and databases.
The 2.9 percent increase is two percentage points above the national average gain as reported by the U.S. Labor Department.
Louisiana now is home to 5,264 manufacturers employing 196,432 workers.
"The state's abundant natural resources and friendly business environment continue to result in many companies investing in its industrial sector, particularly those in the oil and gas and chemicals industries," "said Tom Dubin, president of Evanston, Ill.-based Manufacturers' News.
Employment in oil and gas extraction spiked 17.2 percent over the survey period, according to Manufacturers' News.
Oil and gas companies that have announced plans to locate facilities in Louisiana include South Africa-based Sasol, which will open a natural-gas-to-diesel plant in Westlake, and Methanex, which recently announced that it will open a second ethanol plant in Geismar.
With 22,824 jobs in the state, oil and gas extraction ranks No. 3 in manufacturing employment.
Louisiana's top-ranked manufacturing sector-chemicals-posted a 1.4 percent uptick in employment. The chemicals sector employs 25,296 people in the state.
Bright spots for the chemicals industry included Dyno Nobel's plans to build an ammonia plant in Jefferson Parish; the expansion of Nalco's dry-polymer plant in Garyville; the expansion of two ExxonMobil chemical plants in Baton Rouge and Port Allen; and the recent opening of Myriant's biochemical production facility in Lake Providence.
Meanwhile, the state's transportation-equipment sector posted a 7.8 percent gain in employment.
On the other side of the ledger, employment in the electronics sector was down 12.5 percent, according to Manufacturers' News.
Baton Rouge remains Louisiana's top city for manufacturing employment, with 15,654 industrial jobs, virtually unchanged over the survey period.