Was tied up doing more productive things on a warm Summer day yesterday, but here are a few reflections on the QCEW release from yesterday (click here for the always-cool interactive chart).
1. On a state by-state comparison, Wisconsin didn't do as bad as I would have expected 31st in the nation for job growth overall, and 33rd in the private sector, better than the 40-something rankings they had for the 3rd quarter, and the job growth rates were above what we had last quarter. However, both Walker years are still worse than what we had in Jim Doyle's final year of 2010, as you can see with the prior reports.
Year-over-year total job change, Wisconsin 2010-2012
Q4 2012- +1.19%
Q3 2012- +0.77%
Q2 2012- +1.49%
Q1 2012- +1.17%
Q4 2011- +0.81%
Q4 2010- +1.28%(Doyle/Dem)
Year-over-year private sector job change, Wisconsin 2010-2012
Q4 2012- +1.40%
Q3 2012- +1.02%
Q2 2012- +1.64%
Q1 2012- +1.79%
Q4 2011- +1.31%
Q4 2010- +1.50% (Doyle/Dem)
Particularly when you look at charts of the QCEW's private sector growth numbers, you'll notice that the state hit a ceiling of growth once Act 10 was passed - the highest year-over-year job growth numbers were in March 2011, the month Act 10 was passed.
Also take a look at the numbers starting in June 2012. Remember how Robin Vos and the GOPs were claiming the state's economy would "take off like a rocket" if Walker was retained and the "uncertainty" of the recall election was behind us. Well, there was an effect of keeping Walker on- job growth TANKED, down nearly 40% in the 3 months after the recall, and still down almost 6,000 from what they were in the month the recall election happened.
These numbers also don't account for the deteriorating jobs situation we've had since the start of the year. If that's any indication, these numbers will slip when we see the next QCEW report in September.
Change in jobs, not seasonally adjusted,
Dec 2011-May 2012- +25,369 (QCEW)
Dec 2012-May 2013- +15,000 (BLS)
So this indicates that we're down another 10,000 in year-over-year growth for the first 5 months of this year, and a lot of that will show up in the next report, dropping the relatively small increase of 32,000 private sector jobs down toward 22,000.
The BLS's recent state-by-state report bears that slippage out. This report is benchmarked to the QCEW stats, but also includes its estimates for the 5 months measured since the end of 2012. When you look at that report, Wisconsin does a lot worse than 33rd in job growth.
May 2012-May 2013 jobs by state, U.S.
46. Maine +0.23%
47. Wis. +0.19%
48. Penn +0.08%
49. Wyo. -0.55%
50. Alaska -1.27%
45. R.I. +0.54%
46. Wis. +0.51%
47. Ark. +0.48%
48. Penn +0.41%
49. Alaska -0.56%
50. Wyo. -0.66%
So even while the end-of-2012 QCEW report marks a slight blip up from the horrible report of the 3rd quarter, I wouldn't characterize it as anything to crow about- it's more like a 65-win baseball team going up to 75 wins. I don't find that acceptable, and I sure hope you don't either. And the bad numbers we've seen in the first half of this year should tell us that we're going to continue our slide down in the first QCEW reports reflecting stats for 2013.