More Bad News on Wisconsin Jobs

Current Population Survey Employment Change for Wisconsin, Bureau of Labor Statistics
1 Month, Rolling 3 Month


There are two major surveys that yield a picture of employment, the Current Employment Survey (CES) and the Current Population Survey (CPS). CES surveys employers while CPS surveys households. They count jobs in slightly different ways, but both measures show how poorly Wisconsin is faring after the recession. Yes, the headline number -- average unemployment rate for the state -- stands at 5.7%, which is below the national average. But the number of jobs in Wisconsin and the number of people employed in Wisconsin still have not recovered from the Great Recession. 

Using the CES measure, employment peaked in June 2007, with 2,889,300 jobs. As of June 2014, Wisconsin is down 29,700 jobs compared to that peak. 

Under the CPS measure that calculates how many people are employed at any given time, the number of people employed in Wisconsin reached its peak in February 2008 at 2,959,841. As of June 2014, Wisconsin has 59,690 fewer people employed in the state.

There are a legion of ways to measure the performance of a local economy. But no measure will show success if people are not working because they can't find jobs!

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