JobWatch: Precarious recovery for Ohio

- January 18, 2013
For immediate release
Contact: Hannah Halbert, 614.221.4505

Unemployment drops in December, but so do jobs, labor force
Ohio’s unemployment rate continued to decline as 2012 ended, but the state also saw a drop in both the labor force and the number of jobs, according to two surveys released today by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services.
“Today’s numbers show the precarious state of the economic recovery in Ohio,” said Hannah Halbert, workforce researcher at Policy Matters Ohio. “The drop in unemployment was caused as much by a shrinking labor force as by a decline in joblessness.”
The ODJFS survey of households shows that unemployment fell to 6.7 percent, a drop of .1 percent. Separately, the establishment survey, which provides the job count by surveying firms and generally carries more statistical weight, showed that Ohio lost 9,400 jobs in December. Virtually the entire decline occurred in the service sector.
Ohio gained 90,700 jobs in 2012, a growth rate of 1.8 percent. This is an improvement over 2011, but Ohio still has 235,400  fewer jobs than when the recession began in 2007.
“Even with Ohio’s gains, there are simply too few jobs for the number of workers seeking work,” said Halbert. “If every one of the 92,000-plus jobs listed on the Ohio Means Jobs website were filled today, there would still be more than 295,000 officially unemployed Ohioans.”
JobWatch is an ongoing project of the Economic Policy Institute and
Policy Matters Ohio. Both are nonprofit policy research institutes.
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