On a top-line basis, it looks like a good jobs report, with 4,500 private sector jobs added for the month. It's the 4th time in the last 5 months that Wisconsin has added jobs in this report, which is the first time the state has done that since the passage of Act 10 in March 2011.
However, that is damning with faint praise, as the U.S. has gained jobs each month for nearly 3 years, and the "gain" in Wisconsin is from a lower number than previously thought, as shown in the DWD's own jobs report.
Place of work data: Downward revision to seasonally adjusted private-sector job number in November by 4,000 to show an estimated gain of 6,300 jobs. Downward revision to seasonally adjusted total job number in November by 4,100 to show an estimated gain of 6,500 jobs.So if you include those downward revisions for November, the private sector job gains in December are all of 500 jobs, and 2,800 JOBS WERE LOST comapred to November's original figures.
What this means is that Governor Walker's jobs gap has expanded again- now back to 99,000 jobs overall. And we have fewer jobs than we did before the recall elections, which Walker claimed would "open the floodgates" with jobs.
The same holds in the private sector stats. It's an especially bad record when you realize that if Wisconsin had only kept up with the growth in the rest of the country, the state would have added 51,000 private sector jobs last year. Instead, Fitzwalkerstan added a paltry 9,000 jobs in private sector for 2012.
And even worse, the December job "gains" aren't even a sign of job creation. Remember how Governor Walker said we should look at the "raw numbers" when he tried to get away with saying the state had added 100,000 jobs by this Summer, and was later exposed as a pants-on-fire liar for saying so? Well, the raw numbers also show that there were fewer actual jobs than there were in November, and even the sector with the largest job gains for December only did so because of fewer-than-normal seasonal layoffs.
Job change, Wisconsin, December 2012
Overall jobs -19,200 Non-seasonal adjusted, +1,300 seasonal adjusted
Private sector- -13,100 n.s.a, +4,500 s.a
Construction- -6,900 n.s.a., +4,900 s.a.
So don't be fooled by the Journal-Sentinel headline or spin from the AM620's and other WisGOP mouthpieces. December's Wisconsin job figures are mediocre at best, continue to lag the growing U.S. economy as a whole, and there is no indication that we are turning any kind of corner that'll have job creation take off. In fact, this report, and the expansion of the Walker jobs gap, is further proof that no, it ain't working.