If you get handwound American pickup, it would not be unlikely that every componet in it wire, magnets, etc. came from overseas. I do believe that a lot, not all, of the current day materials, steal, iron, copper, etc. are inferior to what you got in the past. I think this is part of the reason for constant complaints about inferiority of many tuners, hardway, pickups, etc. on cheap guitars, though this is nothing new and part of what makes them a cheap guitar.