Despite 60 straight months of U.S. job growth, recent job reports have been lackluster, particularly for manufacturing, writes Adams Nager in IndustryWeek. The sector has lost 27,000 jobs in the past two months, wages have been stagnant, and hours worked have decreased. It is tempting to dismiss losses with a wave of a hand and an assumption of increased productivity. However, manufacturing job losses represent a real loss in production strength. In truth, labor productivity growth in the United States is well behind that of its competitors, too often leading to U.S. producers being elbowed out of competitive markets.