The Big Story Blog

Where's Minnesota employment headed?

Posted at 6:20 AM on December 15, 2011 by Paul Tosto
Filed under: Economy, Jobs and unemployment

Minnesota fared better than most states during the recession. But if you're unemployed, it sure hasn't felt like a recovery.

October numbers showed a drop in the unemployment rate to 6.4 percent. Yet businesses here cut an estimated 6,100 jobs.

Later this morning, we'll get the data for November and it may hold the same kind of paradox.

Minnesota's stilll trying to find the bounce back in employment that usually comes in a recovery.


The reality is it's likely to be a continued slow road to better times. When Minnesota budget officials a few weeks ago released their economic outlook for the state, they acknowledged it'll be 2014 before the state regains the job levels it saw in 2007 before the Great Recession began.

The report noted:

The number of jobs Minnesota employers add to their payrolls is forecast to average 2,300 a month in the first half of next year before picking up to over 3,500 a month by early 2013. Minnesota's labor market needs to produce an estimated 2,000 jobs a month to keep pace with population growth and new people entering the workforce.

This means as perceptions of growing job opportunities continue to improve and previously discouraged workers continue to re-enter the workforce looking for full-employment, it is likely Minnesota's unemployment rate will remain near 6 percent for much of 2012.
That's a better outlook that for the nation as a whole. But it's not much to hang onto if you're still looking for a job.

We'll get a picture later this morning.

About Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto writes the Big Story Blog for MPR News. He joined the newsroom in 2008 after more than 20 years reporting on education, politics and the economy for news wires and newspapers across the country.

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