Count the holiday hiring rush officially over. CT’s job economy just hit a post-recession low. Which, unfortunately, fueled rumors that another recession is imminent.
Stamford Advocate reports that the state economy sputtered last month. In fact, it actually reached an all time low. I know, what happened?
Didn’t the state hire a buttload of people in the first two months of the year? Well, yes, but a good portion of those hires were for seasonal work.
Analyst Jungmin Charles Joo wrote in the Labor Department’s Economic Digest:
“Last year’s Connecticut employment recovery was the slowest in the last seven years. In fact … 2010-2018’s monthly job recovery rate has been trending downward from the beginning, averaging below 0.1 percent throughout the most of its 95-month employment recovery so far.”
With that rate of recovery compared to our neighbors, the numbers are embarrassing. Nationally, employment rose 1.6 percent since 2010. A number our job economy can’t even hold a candle to.
Back in 2016, the state added 4,600 jobs for a 0.3 percent uptick, which many hailed as a wonderful sign. However, it put things into perspective when the national average was 1.8 percent during the same year.
Not only that, our state still hasn’t regained all the jobs it lost in the 2008 recession. So, CT has ways to go before even dreaming of catching up.
However, the private sector confirms that they managed to regain all the jobs they lost back then. But, on the public side, things keep hobbling along.
Four out of the state’s 10 major industries added jobs. Meanwhile, the Government sector saw the harshest decline. It lost 3,500 jobs in 2008, but it continues to shrink every year.
On top of that, the state’s unemployment rate continues to hold steady at 4.7 percent. The national unemployment rate is 4.4 percent.
Also, don’t forget our personal income continues to contract. While the nation saw wages increase as a whole, CT’s remained stagnant. Actually, it came “dead last” last year.
Because of these factors, Joo says he isn’t optimism about our state’s economic or financial strength:
“The continuously falling monthly employment recovery rate and the declining ADI (measure of overall economic activity), along with the ongoing state budgetary situation, all seem to point to challenges to job growth in the near future.”
On top of that, economists believe our recovery won’t accelerate anytime soon, either. There’s just too many factors stacked against us at this point.
Especially since our business industry consistently ranks our “business friendliness” amongst the worst in the nation.
It also doesn’t help when Fairfield U economics professor Todd Martin said the state grows only a third as fast as the nation. However, he calls the slow growth a “best case scenario.” Our job economy looks too anemic at this point for anything else.
Plus, our lawmakers don’t know how to help. You know, beyond asking us taxpayers to reach deeper into our pockets. Because we ALL know tolls will save us all. Right?
Yeah. We know exactly how our lawmakers will abuse that new stream of revenue.
All in all, it appears our state may see things turn around in late 2019. That’s what Farmington Bank economic adviser Don Klepper-Smith believes.
He also cautioned that the state could head into another recession if it’s not careful.
But what do you make of this? Will our state be able to save itself? What can it do to steer the ship before it sinks into oceans of debt?