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The Hidden Reason Manufacturing Jobs Have Disappeared

Energizer is shutting down two Wisconsin plants and moving much of the work overseas. Who should you blame?

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For decades, battery manufacturing supported the communities of Fennimore and Portage, Wisconsin. Then suddenly, last year, everything changed.

Energizer is moving its jobs here overseas—to Singapore and the U.K.—and to a non-union factory in North Carolina.

But the six hundred union workers at these two factories aren’t the only ones in trouble. America has lost 35 percent of our manufacturing jobs in the last 40 years.

The question is, what happened? Why have jobs in towns like Fennimore and Portage—places that used to be the bedrock of American manufacturing—disappeared? To find an answer, we went to Wisconsin.

What we learned wasn’t just about Energizer. It was also about how companies buy their competitors to shift profits to executives at workers’ expense, how politicians who claim to care about American jobs let them get away with it, and what we can do to stop it.

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