Women's, Girls' and Juniors' Suits, Skirts, and Coats
This category covers establishments primarily engaged in manufacturing women's, girls' and junior's suits, pantsuits, skirts, coats (except fur coats and raincoats), and tailored jackets and vests, from purchased woven or knit fabrics. These garments are generally tailored and usually lined.
Following the 20-year trend of declines in apparel purchases, sales continued to experience sharp declines throughout the 2000s. More consumers, including upper-end consumers, also preferred shopping for apparel in discount channels, lowering the value of purchases. As the decade went on, spending in the industry began to increase as consumer confidence grew with the stabilizing economy. While discounters were still doing well, upscale designers and retailers were back in the game, with surges in sales activity in the mid-2000s. However, in 2005, quotas on imported textile and apparel goods were lifted, causing a glut of inexpensive imports, primarily from China, to flood the U.S. market. Manufacturers in this industry fought back, and a WTO safeguard to limit imports until 2008.