Sunday, August 15, 2004

According to figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics - as cited in a New York Times graphic (15 August, 2004, 'The Jobs Picture', A12) - from March 2001 (when the recession officially began, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research) to June 2004, 17 states (34% of the total) have seen an increase in employment* ranging from .4% (South Carolina) to 7% (Nevada), and 31 states (62% of the total) have seen a decrease in employment ranging from .1% (Wisconsin) to 5.7% (Massachusetts). The number of jobs** created in the intervening 38 months range from 260,000 (Florida) to 3,000 (South Dakota), and the number of jobs lost range from 1,000 (Vermont) to 222,000 (Illinois).

When you figure that a significant majority of states*** have seen net job losses, the dictum that our economy "has turned the corner" does not stand to scrutiny.

*Presumably net employment (for all figures), although it is not specified in the graphic.

**The numbers regarding new job creation or loss are also presumed to be net.

***Again, 34% of the States have had net job growth and 62% of the States have had net job decay; the remaining 4% (Maine and Missouri) have had no net change since the beginning of the recession (March 2001).

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