Thursday, January 19, 2017

Meh December means 2016 has worst job growth yet under Walker

In between all of the points and counterpoints about yesterday's release of the Wisconsin revenue figures, we had another monthly Wisconsin jobs report come out this afternoon. And not really much to discuss here, beyond the typically pathetic Walker Administration spin job on the figures.

Total jobs-
DOWN 3,700, November revised UP 3,000. NET -700.

This is a bit misleading because 5,100 of the decline in December and 1,500 of the revised increase in November is due to "local government." This is likely due to one-time hiring for the November election, and the subsequent reduction of those workers in the December report. But still stagnant, even if you adjust for the election workforce items.

Private sector jobs-
UP 900, November revised UP 1,500. NET +2,200.

Again "Meh," especially as the nation added 144,000 private sector jobs in December and also had upward revisions. What is noteworthy are the increases in Manufacturing by a seasonally-adjusted 3,000 and Construction by 2,700 (actually, Construction was the result of lower-than-normal seasonal layoffs, but it works). On the downside the Trade/Retail sector had a bad drop of 4,900 jobs on a seasonally-adjusted basis. Not a good sign when you should be hiring up for the Holiday shopping season, and indicative of what has been a soft Fiscal Year 2017 for sales taxes in Wisconsin.

The bigger story is that this December report continued a 2016 trend of bad job numbers in Wisconsin. While the nation has been still consistently adding around 150,000 jobs a month for the last 9 months, Wisconsin actually has fewer people working now than they did in March.

Job change, Wisconsin March 2016 - Dec 2016
Total jobs -3,400
Private sector -2,100

In fact, 2016 had the least amount of total jobs gained in Wisconsin since 2011, and the lowest RATE of private sector job growth since Walker was elected in 2010! Bet you won't see that fact mentioned in many places. 2016 also added more than 16,000 jobs to the total Walker jobs gap, and now Wisconsin is more than 110,000 jobs behind the rest of the country's pace since the Age of Fitzwalkerstan began in 2011.

Oh, but now that Trump will be president, this will all change. And our budget will balance and somehow we'll finally reach 250,000 jobs in the next year. Riiiiiight.

Well, in fairness, US job growth will likely flatten out under Drumpf, but I bet the gap is still well over 6 figures when 2017 ends as well.

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