Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Confirmed- Walker Admin overstated Wis's bad job growth before election

A couple of weeks back, I noticed that the "gold standard" Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) released the top line numbers, and it showed Wisconsin continuing to stay far behind the US rate of job growth. However, this only covered all jobs and urban areas, so I wanted to see further information with more detail.

Today, the full "gold standard report was released, and as usual, feel free to go to the QCEW map site to break down the data by state and county.

As predicted, Wisconsin's numbers were bad for the September 2017-September 2018 time period, and were well behind the numbers the Walker Administration were claiming before the November elections.

And for the 29th straight quarter since Walker/WisGOP budgets have been the law in Wisconsin, our state was in the bottom half of the US for rate of job growth.

To be exact, Wisconsin was 36th out of the 50 states for all jobs, and 34th for private sector jobs. Both numbers were less than 20,000, and well below a 1% rate.

Lastly, Wisconsin's manufacturers continue to fail to pay an adequate wage to workers, despite getting hundreds of millions of dollars in tax cuts each year by Walker and WisGOP.

Average weekly wage, manufacturing Sept 2018
Minn $1,269
Ill. $1,261
Mich $1,214
Ind. $1,131
Ohio $1,127
Iowa $1,103
Wis. $1,078

These numbers also tell me that tomorrow's new Wisconsin jobs report for January 2019 will show a major downward revision of job growth by around 20,000. This means that Scott Walker and the Wisconsin GOP likely fell short of adding 250,000 jobs in Wisconsin, despite having 8 years to do so instead of the 4 Scotty promised voters in 2010.

You wonder how that guy lost despite Scotty and his GOP allies spending $23 million more than Tony Evers and Dems? Us falling short of the "gold standard" (again) helps to explain how.


  1. The state GOP is boundlessly corrupt, boundlessly ignorant, and ideologically constipated.
    These morons cling to a disproven strategy that bringing manufacturing jobs back to to the state will placate ordinary Wisconsinites. Supposedly they also believe this will help the state economy to finally, FINALLY, recover. But do these same clueless GOP legislators actually believe this drivel?
    Some of these houseplants do. Others know full well this idiocy, chasing after manufacturing jobs, is the epitome of contingency thinking (get-me-reelected-thinking), is no long-term strategic plan, that it will not restore broadly-shared prosperity, that it is doomed to fail. But these GOP puppet-legislators are well compensated to dance and babble as their one-percent masters decree. They are in no way, shape or form "public servants."
    Bringing back manufacturing jobs is also hopelessly backward thinking. African Americans migrated to northern manufacturing centers after WWII and took many manufacturing jobs, but today citizens look first at quality of life issues, when they have the means to do so (!), before deciding where to live. And Wisconsin, under Walker and the GOP legislative majority, have squandered and strangled many of the very quality of life signifiers that once made the Badger State attractive.
    Indeed, the state, under GOP misrule, and as a consequence of their calculated jury rigging of the state economy to shovel money upwards at undeserving one-percenters, is depopulating. People who can move out of state are doing so.

  2. The method I use for calculating the net job growth is to depend on as few unbenchmarked numbers as possible. Hence from the workplace survey, says from December 2010 to September 2011 Wisconsin added 25,800 private sector jobs. Those figures were benchmarked properly a long time ago: the not-seasonally adjusted series shows +47,000 over these nine months while QCEW below shows +51,492, so it's not off by much.

    Then QCEW says - given that it's not seasonally adjusted and hence you have to take whole years - that between September 2011 and September 2018 Wisconsin added 189,258 private sector jobs. The September 2018 figure isn't finalized but it's extremely rare to see the final figures jump by more than 3,000 once late paperwork comes in.

    Then going back to the workplace survey for unbenchmarked figures September 2018 to December 2018, apparently 19,700 jobs were added then. That's very much beyond any benchmarked 3 month growth in the Walker era, but the mark was hit in April 2005 and a few times in the 90s. September 2018's figure seems a bit low for the trendline that jobs were on so that might explain it. So a big pinch of salt is needed but it's not an order of magnitude out.

    Add them up and you get a Walker-era total of 234,758, which is much more likely to be an overestimate if anything. The discrepancy is so large that the error bars just don't admit any chance that the 250k figure was hit in the Walker era. All that's left is for the final December 2018 QCEW figures to precisely quantify the scale of the WisGOP's economic failure.