American Industry Overview: Apparel Belts

This category includes establishments primarily engaged in manufacturing apparel belts. Companies that produce all types of belts for clothing are grouped in this industry, regardless of the material from which the belts are made.

The overall accessories business, like other sectors of the apparel industry, struggled with waning sales as the U.S. economy slowed in the first decade of the twenty-first century. Along with the sluggish economic conditions, U.S. accessories manufacturers were also forced to contend with increased imports, the result of free trade agreements and China's entrance into the World Trade Organization in December 2001.

According to Dun and Bradstreet's 2009 Industry Reports, 166 establishments employed 2,858 workers in the manufacture of apparel belts. About 80 percent of the firms employed fewer than 25 people. New York accounted for 738 employees in this category, Texas for 637, and California for 530. California led the nation in terms of revenue, accounting for 41 percent of the $146.5 million in total sales. Other key states, such as New York, with $24.7 million, and Florida, with $12.7 million, contributed significantly less in sales.