President Obama calls on Congress to extend and expand the payroll tax cut — to protect middle class families and ensure that the economy continues to grow
Category Archives: unemployment rate
Since the beginning of 2010, New Jersey has awarded more than $1 billion in tax subsidies as part of a strategy aimed at jump-starting the state’s economy and putting tens of thousands of people back to work.
Even as Governor Christie pleaded poverty to make deep cuts to essential services like education and health care, the state doled out tax credits and grants to corporations and developers in New Jersey at an unprecedented rate.
Incentives for economic investment were necessary, it was argued, to create a more business-friendly climate that would generate good jobs for New Jerseyans.
Sadly, it hasn’t worked. Not even a little bit.
Employment statewide is down more than 5,000 jobs since the beginning of 2010.
Last month, 3,847,200 people were employed in New Jersey, according to the state Department of Labor and Work Force Development’s monthly non-farm employment report, which is available here. That’s down 5,100 from the 3,852,600 who were employed in January 2010, when the state embarked on probably the most generous business subsidy effort New Jersey has ever seen. (For more, see NJPP’s report A Surge in Subsidies.) It’s also a precipitous drop – 231,700 jobs – from peak employment of 4,078,900 in 2007.
A breakdown of the data shows the state has lost 7,600 manufacturing jobs and 4,500 construction jobs in the private sector since January 2010. They also show the state has lost 24,400 public sector jobs — as teachers, police and other employees were laid off. Those 36,500 lost jobs were offset somewhat by a gain in the service sector of nearly 31,000 jobs.
The decline in employed New Jerseyans might come as a surprise to some who’ve assumed that the economy was improving because the state unemployment rate dropped from 9.8 percent to 9.3 percent during that time. (The U.S. rate, over the same period, has fallen twice as fast, from 10.0 percent to 8.8 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.)
But it turns out the drop in the state unemployment rate is a statistical anomaly because, since January 2010, the state’s labor force — the number of people working plus those looking for work — actually declined to 4,493,000 from 4,522,200 as people moved away or gave up on the hope of finding a job. So the unemployment rate didn’t go down because more people are working; it went down because fewer people are looking.
Seems like there might have been a better way to spend that $1 billion….
There is some good news today for President Obama and the Democrats, contrary to what some had been predicting the unemployment rate did not rise as expected. The unemployment rate dropped in January from 10% to 9.7% thanks in part job growth coming from manufacturing and retail industries.
541,000 Americans left the ranks of the unemployed and found job last month. you can read about it below:
By CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER
The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — The unemployment rate dropped unexpectedly in January to 9.7 percent from 10 percent while employers shed 20,000 jobs, the government said Friday.
The rate dropped because a survey of households found the number of employed Americans rose by 541,000, the Labor Department said. The job losses are calculated from a separate survey of employers.
The report also included an annual revision to the estimates of total payrolls, which showed there were 930,000 fewer jobs last March than previously estimated. The department also revised down its estimates for April through October of last year, adding another 433,000 job losses.
The November figure was revised higher, however, to show a gain of 64,000 jobs.
All told, the Great Recession has eliminated 8.4 million jobs, the department said. That’s the most of any recession since World War II as a proportion of total payrolls.
Aside from November’s gain, January’s job losses were the smallest since the recession began. Employers cut 779,000 jobs in January 2009.
The report included more good news from the manufacturing sector, which is a key factor in the recovery. Manufacturers gained 11,000 jobs, its largest increase since April 2006.
Retailers added 42,100 jobs, the most since November 2007, before the recession began. Temporary help services gained 52,000 jobs, the fourth month of gains in that category. That could signal future hiring, as employers usually hire temp workers before permanent ones.
The number of part-time workers who want full-time work, but can’t find it fell by almost 1 million. That lowered the “underemployment” rate, which also includes discouraged workers, to 16.5 percent from 17.3 percent.
Even though Monmouth County’s jobless rate is up by 3.2% over last year, it seems that the worst for county residents is over according to an article written by Tom Shortell and published in Greater Media Newspaper’s The Independent .
For anyone who may doubt that the economy is beginning to turn around, there is some more good news about job creation here in New Jersey. During the past year 3,800 private sector banking jobs have been created due to the easing of credit and more loans being made.
The number of bank employees in New Jersey rose from 17,203 in June 2008 to 21,003 in June 2009, and state bank lending increased 11 percent from $88.7 billion to $98.9 billion over that period, the state Department of Banking and Insurance said. Banking employees had been going down for several years.
Bank representatives said they picked up lending business when other avenues for consumers shut down, such as mortgage brokers. The secondary market for buying mortgages dried up over the past year, leaving brokers without a place to sell loans they made.
By contrast, some community banks hold onto some of their loans and do not resell them, said Neil Jasey, commissioner of the banking and insurance department.
The number of employees at New Jersey banks fell from 20,616 in June 2006 to 19,697 in June 2007, before hitting 17,203 last year, the department said.
This week the President recaps a busy week, from strides on fiscal discipline, to financial stability, to cracking down on tax havens and tax breaks for shifting jobs overseas. For his next big step, he calls for a credit card reform bill: “Americans know that they have a responsibility to live within their means and pay what they owe. But they also have a right to not get ripped off by the sudden rate hikes, unfair penalties, and hidden fees that have become all-too common in our credit card industry.” Watch Your Weekly Address to find out what he plans to do about it.
President Obama capped off a busy week in Washington remarking on new lending guidelines aimed at lowering mortgage payments; an initiative to generate funds for small business and college loans; the release of his administration’s first budget which includes $2T in deficit reduction; and the start of long overdue health care reform.