Wisconsin Benchmarked Employment through January: Flat since April

Today, the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development released establishment data benchmarked to data from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages through September of 2016. Briefly, Wisconsin employment continues to lag the Nation, and its neighbor Minnesota.

Figure 1: Log nonfarm payroll employment for Minnesota (blue), Wisconsin (red), and US (black), all normalized to 2011M01=0. Green shading denotes period for which QCEW data is not available. Source: BLS, DWD, DEED, accessed 3/9/2017, and author’s calculations.

The DWD release is here.

As I predicted in August, a chunk of the earlier employment surge has been “revised away” in the wake of the QCEW release (in which Wisconsin ranked 33rd in employment growth through September.)

Figure 2: Wisconsin nonfarm payroll employment, December 2016 release (teal), January 2017 release (red), s.a., in 1000’s, log scale. Green shading denotes period for which QCEW data is not available. Source: BLS, DWD, accessed 3/9/2017.</small

And this is the future that the Governor said was so bright “he had to wear shades”? (Private employment is still some 50,000 shy of the 250,000 new jobs he promised for January of 2015).

8 thoughts on “Wisconsin Benchmarked Employment through January: Flat since April

  1. Fact Facing

    But this sub-par performance CAN’T be true. Supply side mythology was in place making things awesome just like it was on a national level during the Bush years when it also had fantastic results that were almost as good as the results of the same gospel supply side spectacularness in Kansas under Brownback!

  2. Ray LaPan-Love

    Once Californians started making cheese…Wisconsin was doomed. Some Wisconsin residents have even been seen sneaking into California to smuggle out the better cheese.

  3. Neil

    Interesting analysis. Have you expanded to cover other states? I wonder why Connecticut is doing so poorly relative to Massachusetts for example.

    1. spencer

      Mass is probably doing better than Conn for many of the same reasons that GE moved its headquarters from Conn to Mass.

      It boiled down to the point that Mass is a well run state with the best public education system in the country. In any and every test tried, Mass public school student constantly score better than every other state. In math, Mass actually outperforms Singapore. Largely because of this Mass. is the countries first post-industrial economy. Education, healthcare, finance and technology — especially biotech — are the strongest industries in the state because the state government and teachers union provide business with the best educated employees. Funny that Mass healthcare is so good considering that Mass doctors make less than doctors in any other state. They come to Mass to
      be educated and like the quality of life so much that they stay even though they could make more money elsewhere.

      On the other hand, Mass does have a problem creating lower middle class jobs and the people in those jobs have serious problem finding affordable housing. Many of them move to other states.
      But that is a self reinforcing movement as best and the brightest move here from out of state and the average employees leave.

  4. Steven Kopits

    Unemployment rates:

    Wisconsin: 4.1% (17th)
    California: 5.2% (40th)

    But remember ‘fixed effects’, which means, ‘governance here was bad before, too’.

    1. Jake fomerly of the LP

      Stop making excuses for supply-side failure, Stevie.

      A big reason Wisconsin’s unemployment has been low is the same reason the failed state of Kansas has low unemployment- MANY PEOPLE ARE LEAVING AND THOSE WHO STAY ARE AGING. Another thing that was massively revised down in that Wisconsin report was the size of the workforce and the number of people “employed”

      Labor force -18,000
      Employment -19,800

      1. baffling

        correct. you do not hear about people migrating to wisconsin. but you do hear about people migrating to california-even without a job!

  5. dilbert dogbert

    Brownback is headed for Rome. Tail between his legs. What ambassadorship will Walker be looking for? I suggest Kazakhstan.

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