Auto Manufacturers Drive Demand for Plating Services


Hello again.

According to a Bureau of Labor Statistics report, U.S. manufacturers of durable goods added 22,000 new jobs in the month of March, while the manufacturing industry, in general, has created over 232,000 new jobs since the beginning of the year. This employment data bodes well for the industry, and for the economy overall.

The Bureau’s data for March also showed that more than 9,000 new jobs were created in the Fabricated Metal Products manufacturing sector. Metal Fabrication is a core process throughout industry, with fabrication shops turning out countless different metal parts and components for OEMs, contractors, and Value Added Resellers.

Further down the supply chain, a great number of those metal parts will typically need some type of surface finishing, such as a coating or plating, for things like decorative appeal, durability, corrosion resistance, friction reduction, and more.

On that note, for this week’s Thomas Index we took a look at sourcing activity on the platform for various Plating Services, and our data shows some upward trends. In fact, we see a month-over-month increase in sourcing activity in ten different categories for industrial and precious metals plating. In addition to the two broader categories of Electroplating and simply Plating, there’s increased sourcing demand for Plating using the specific metals of Silver, Copper, Brass & Bronze, Zinc-Nickel Alloy, Tin, Cadmium, Chromium, and Hard Chromium

To better understand who these buyers are, Thomas provides advanced web analytics tools, and the plating suppliers on our platform that use those tools share with us that many of the potential customers they’re connecting with are within the automotive industry. In fact, according to a report by Grand View Research, auto manufacturers are the largest revenue segment for the overall metal plating industry and are increasing their reliance on metal plating to protect more automotive parts than in the past.

Moving on from Plating, here’s a quick look at the top ten products and services being sourced over the past four weeks at With steep metal tariffs in place, steel continues its run at the top of the list.

  1. Steel
  2. Sheet Metal Fabrication
  3. CNC Machining
  4. Valves
  5. Machining
  6. Metal Fabrication
  7. Contract Manufacturing
  8. Electronic Manufacturing Services
  9. Food Products
  10. Electronic Contract Manufacturing

If you’re a supplier of Plating Services or any of the categories on this top ten list and more, buyers are looking for what you offer right now at

Well, that’s what our data shows this week. The best way to get this weekly Thomas Index report – and other useful industry news – is to sign up for our daily Thomas Industry Update. You can do so by visiting

Thanks for watching, and I’ll see you next week.

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