Thursday, November 17, 2016

Revised numbers show Wisconsin job growth much less than we were told

With it being the 3rd Thursday of the month, it was time for another Wisconsin jobs report from the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development. The topline numbers were pretty good (up 10,400 jobs overall, 6,000 in the private sector, and 11,800 with positive revisions from the previous month). However, even that good report still means only 100 private sector jobs have been added since March, and we're down 1,200 jobs overall in that time. The state's unemployment rate stayed at 4.1% (and nothing out of the ordinary there), a good number, although a lack of labor force growth is more of a reason for that vs more people actually working.

But another part of the report is the real news. As they do every 3 months, DWD released their preliminary figures for the “gold standard” Quarterly Census on Employment and Wages, this time for the 2nd Quarter of 2016. Those figures will compare the reports between June 2015 and June 2016, and let me go back to what the Walker Administration wrote in the original DWD jobs report for June 2016, which came out 4 months ago.
Based on preliminary data, the state added a statistically significant 49,900 private sector jobs from June 2015 to June 2016, including a one-month gain of 10,900 jobs in June. Other significant changes include monthly and year-over-year increases in manufacturing at 2,300 and 6,600, respectively, a one-month increase in construction by 2,100 jobs, and a 12-month increase in total non-farm jobs at 47,800. Financial activities, and leisure and hospitality also saw significant increases over the month. Total nonfarm jobs grew by 5,300 over the month.
And now let’s compare that to what the DWD released today, under further review.

Change in Wis jobs, June 2015-June 2016
Total jobs
Original June release +47,800 (+1.66%)
Actual QCEW report +26,313 (+0.93%)

Private sector jobs
Original June release +49,900 (+1.66%)
Actual QCEW report +25,656 (+1.04%)

Somehow, I don’t think we’ll see an “Oops, sorry about that” note from Walker’s DWD, and I also am not counting on the Wisconsin media to let the average dope know it either.

Not only is that job growth much less than originally reported, but the 1.04% quarter-end private sector job growth is the lowest since Walker took office in January 2011, and the lowest in any 12-month period since April 2013 (a weather-related fluke).

The 1.04% growth is well below the national rate of 1.92% in that time period, and we’ll see in 3 weeks how far down this puts Wisconsin when compared to rest of the US and the Midwest. Given how far behind we are from the national rate, I'm thinking Wisconsin is very likely to be in at least the bottom 20 for the rate of national job growth for the 20th straight quarter during the Age of Fitzwalkerstan, and could well be bottom 10.

And you rubes in small-town Wisconsin thought Trump was the guy who could change this underperforming trend? You were looking in the wrong place, guys. The real problem in Wisconsin is at the state level, where Fitzwalkerstani policies are keeping us behind the rest of the nation, and with no further investment in education likely and more wage suppression likely to come, there isn’t going to be any way to drag us out of these doldrums. Yet you guys voted to return all those Republicans to the Legislature....

Amazingly, our fair Governor is running his Dropout yap and claiming Trump should look to Wisconsin as a “big, bold” model on how to do things? That's only true if you want slower job growth, increased corruption, increased brain drain (a big reason for our “low” unemployment rate- no one wants to come here), and constant budget deficits.

But hey, maybe that is the GOP’s plan, both in Madison and in DC. Make the vast majority of people destitute and reliant on corporate benefactors while handing out tax cuts and other favors to the rich and connected. But I sure don’t think it’s what all of those rural Wisconsinites had in mind when they voted for Trump and the GOP due to blind anger and resentment promises to “drain the DC swamp” and improve the economy for people like them. SUCKERS!


  1. We are now in a world where data do not matter. Trying to approach tribal rhetoric as if it reflects reality is futile. Perhaps it is time for Kaplan's benevolent dictator. Perhaps this is Trump.

  2. I don't think The Donald's going to be looking at Guv Dropout, Jake. If you recall the GOP debates, he thoroughly clowned Wanker. It was fun to watch.

  3. I'd missed your posting, but someone on Facebook referenced it and I am glad to incorporate it here.

    1. Thanks James! You do a great job yourself and I read The Political Environment on a regular basis.

      And the other 5 readers of this blog should also check it out, especially given the environmental mess going on in this state as the job numbers continue to suck.

  4. Let me second the praise for 'The Political Environment.' Like Jake's blog, I read every day.