CA Could Have Worst Jobless Rate

John Seiler:

California never has had the worst U.S. unemployment rate. During the Great Depression, we weren’t hit as hard as most other states. Hollywood and the aerospace industry took off. Food exports to other states and the world grew. Famously, the Okies drove out here for work, as depicted in the novel and movie, “The Grapes of Wrath.”

But next month, or the one after, California could have the worst unemployment rate in the country, a dismal achievement that says too much about the anti-business, anti-middle class climate in the state.

In new figures, the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Labor Department reported that California unemployment dropped a little in April, to 11.9 percent, from 12 percent in March. The national rate is 9.0 percent. That’s all to the good. But California’s improvement was just 0.1 percentage-point. The state still suffers the second-worst jobless rate, behind Nevada.

Nevada’s unemployment rate dropped to 12.5 percent, still the worst in the country. But the BLS notes, “Nevada experienced the largest over-the-month unemployment rate decrease in April (-0.7 percentage point).”

If that pattern holds next month — Nevada’s unemployment dropping 0.7 percentage point and California’s dropping 0.1 percentage point — then California would be tied for the worst unemployment rate.

And for the year spanning April 2010 to April 2011, Nevada’s unemployment rate dropped 2.4 points, but California’s dropped only 0.5 point.

Michigan, which for most of the Great Recession suffered unemployment above 15 percent — worst in the country — also has improved rapidly. According to the BLS, “Michigan recorded the largest jobless rate decrease from April 2010 (-2.9 percentage points).” Its unemployment rate now is 10.2 percent, and is converging rapidly on the national rate of 9 percent.

Gov. Jerry Brown, the Democratic Legislature and the government unions that control them keep taking a crow bar to the heads of state businesses already bleeding on the tarmac. As business leave the Pyrite State, go bankrupt here, or never come here, we’re mostly missing the national economic recovery.

And when the next recession strikes, which could be soon, in California it’s going to be a real doozy.

May 23, 2011





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  1. Curtis L. Walker
    Curtis L. Walker 23 May, 2011, 21:09

    Brown has been in office a few months and the Dems and Gov are the target. What about the Republican who just spent seven years destroying the State? Like at the Federal level, Jerry inherited the mess from a Republican. Fair and Balanced is starting to come to mind.

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