New 10%+ Unemployment States Doubles in February

Discussion in 'Economics' started by ByLoSellHi, Mar 27, 2009.

  1. Jobless Rate Exceeds 10% in 3 More U.S. States as Slump Spreads
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    By Bob Willis

    March 27 (Bloomberg) --
    The number of U.S. states with a jobless rate exceeding 10 percent almost doubled in February as the worst employment slump in the postwar era spread.

    Nevada, North Carolina and Oregon last month joined the four other states that had previously climbed above 10 percent, according to Labor Department data released today in Washington. Michigan, at 12 percent, remained the state with the highest unemployment rate, followed by South Carolina at 11 percent and Oregon at 10.8. California and Rhode Island bring the total number of states to seven.

    Job losses have spread from areas battered by the housing recession and auto slump to states like the Carolinas where non- auto manufacturers and service companies are cutting staff. Economists at Merrill Lynch & Co. in New York and Wachovia Corp. in Charlotte, North Carolina, are among those projecting joblessness nationwide will surpass 10 percent.

    “It’s something we’re not accustomed to seeing in this country,” said Mark Vitner, a senior economist at Wachovia. “Double-digit unemployment rates are simply un-American.”

    Forty-nine states and the District of Columbia registered increases in the unemployment rate last month, led by Oregon, North Carolina and New Jersey, the Labor Department said. Nebraska was the only state to post a decrease after the rate jumped the prior month.

    The states where home prices surged and then crashed remain among the hardest hit, including Nevada, with its 10.1 percent joblessness. Nicole Wolf, 39, was working for Harrah’s Entertainment Inc. in Las Vegas for the human resources department until this month when she was laid off from her job that paid $94,000 a year.

    Mortgage Underwater

    With her home worth less than her mortgage, and paying $800 a month to cover student loans, Wolf is trying to find a job in marketing or communications before her severance pay runs out.

    “I’m assuming I’ll have a job or declare bankruptcy,” Wolf said in a telephone interview.

    The outlook for finding work this month hasn’t improved. The world’s largest economy probably lost more than 600,000 jobs in March for a fourth straight month, and the jobless rate jumped to a 25-year high of 8.5 percent, according to the median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News before next week’s report from Labor.

    Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke said in Washington March 10 that it was “certainly well within the realm of possibility” that average unemployment nationwide could rise above 10 percent “for a period.”

    Pain Spreads

    With the recession already matching the longest in the postwar period, the jobless and the needy are becoming more evident across the country.

    Gabriela Romero, who works for the Fresno County Economic Opportunities Commission, last month organized a food drive in Mendotta, California, a city where four of 10 workers are unemployed, and arrived to find a crush of people seeking assistance.

    “It was just a free-for-all,” she said. “You have people waiting in line for hours, pregnant women, disabled people.”

    Since the recession began in December 2007, the economy has lost 4.4 million jobs, already more than the 3.5 million jobs President Barack Obama is targeting to save or create with his $787 billion recovery program.

    Payroll employment in February decreased in 49 states and the District of Columbia, led by California’s loss of 116,000 jobs. Florida had the second-biggest drop with 49,500 workers dismissed, followed by 46,100 positions cut in Texas, 41,600 in Pennsylvania and 37,200 in Illinois.

    Psychological Impact

    Surpassing 10 percent unemployment has a psychological impact and may further curtail spending, said Doug Woodward, a University of South Carolina regional economist in Columbia.

    “It’s creating more anxiety and more fear,” he said. “It’s feeding on itself.”

    Job losses are spreading from manufacturers such as General Motors Corp., Caterpillar Inc. and International Business Machines Corp. to other firms like lumber producer Weyerhaeuser Co., media companies like the New York Times Co. and even the U.S. Postal Service. They are affecting all income brackets and professions.

    Fred Herrmann, 33, of Minneapolis, lost his job as a mortgage broker making $250,000 a year in December when his company folded. He said he’s applied for 25 finance and sales jobs, each making $14 to $18 an hour plus commission.

    Lower Pay

    “There’s not a whole lot of high-paying jobs,” he said. “When you go from making a quarter of a million a year to 15 bucks an hour, that’s not good.”

    On the lower end of the scale, Arthur Bolden, 61, is finding it harder than ever to get a job as a day laborer.

    While he used to get $10 an hour, the prevailing wage now is $7 or $8 an hour, he said, as he waited for work outside of a Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, social services building. “People don’t even have money to pay for landscaping or to cut grass.”

    The jobless rates in North Carolina, at 10.7 percent, and Rhode Island, at 10.5, were the highest for those states since records began in 1976. Georgia, at 9.3 percent, also set a new high mark.

    To contact the reporter on this story: Bob Willis in Washington at
    Last Updated: March 27, 2009 11:56 EDT
  2. I highly doubt it's a stretch to forecast 12%+ national unemployment, with 15%+ plus possible in quite a few states, within a year.

    Layoff announcements, which have been massive lately, lag actual layoffs by three months or more.
  3. Jobs is a lagging indicator. The economic bottom is in, little doubt about that. It's true on the US side and the international side...

    Why do you continually post all this negative shit that we can get for ourselves with ease? Is Obama paying you to extend the perception of crisis?? WTF ??

    Bloomberg has always been bearish, I never read any of it. Being biased is being stupid, you'll get it some day... maybe...
  4. Please explain to me how the fuck the economy has bottomed. How is that fucking possible?

    Any increase in retail sales has strictly been related to tax refunds...
  5. Bloomberg is 'biased' and 'bearish'...haha. That's hilarious, you retard.

    Maybe that's why Fortune 500 companies and financial firms pay tens of thousands of dollars a year so that they can rely on Bloomberg terminals when making corporate level and investment decisions.
  6. I am not going to reveal how I know that, it might as well be considered proprietary even though it is not at all. The news followers are not going to know it for a long time, it's to Obama's advantage to keep people in crisis mode and terrified. During the Bush admin we had an economy that was stellar by any and all measures and forty percent of people polled thought we were in a depression !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. I had thought you were a moron.

    You've now removed all doubt.