Wisconsin Employment Continues Downward in August

And is over 12,000 below April peak. Private nonfarm payroll employment is also declining, with previous months’ data revised down.

First, Wisconsin nonfarm payroll employment compared to Minnesota (blue) and US (black), relative to 2011M01.

Figure 1: Nonfarm payroll employment in Minnesota (blue), Wisconsin (red), and US (black), all in logs normalized to 2011M01=0. The light green shaded period pertains to data that has not yet been benchmarked using QCEW data. Source: WI DWD, MN DEED, BLS and author’s calculations.

Here is a detail on private nonfarm payroll employment, last three releases.

Figure 2: Private nonfarm payroll employment from June release (green), July release (red), and August (blue), 000’s, s.a. Source: WI DWD, various releases.

Today’s press release remarks on the establishment data thus:

Based on preliminary data, the state added 19,000 total non-farm jobs and 20,100 private-sector jobs from August 2016 to August 2017, with a significant year-over-year gain of 10,200 manufacturing jobs. This accounts for a preliminary one-month decrease of 8,800 total non-farm and 5,200 private sector jobs from July to August 2017.

In news released last week, Wisconsin ranked 30th among states in terms of private sector job annual growth as measured by the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW), through March 2017. Recall, this was what the Walker Administration previously called “the gold standard” of employment measures (it is a census, as opposed to a survey).

3 thoughts on “Wisconsin Employment Continues Downward in August

  1. mike v

    I was looking at the coincident index data for the midwest and I was struck by a few things:

    1. Of all the midwestern states Wisconsin & Illinois have the strongest correlation in the coincident data, which I was not expecting. Illinois is a lot more diverse demographically and economically.

    2. Minnesota is blowing every midwestern state away on the coincident index since 2000. Why? What is Minnesota doing right?

    3. Since 2011, the WI coincident index has grown faster than most midwestern states, except for MN. So wile employment might be lacking, other indicators are apparently doing okay.

  2. Bruce Hall


    Scott Walker’s team put this out very recently. https://walker.wi.gov/press-releases/made-america-right-here-wisconsin-governor-walker-signs-wisconn-valley-special

    What isn’t in there, but is part of an email touting the same story is this:
    On top of the 13,000 high-tech manufacturing jobs, the project will also support 10,000 construction jobs over each of the next four years, as well as 22,000 more indirect and induced jobs to be created throughout the state.

    Additionally, a report released by a UW-Madison economist predicts Foxconn will provide a $4 return to Wisconsin taxpayers for every $1 invested.

    Who among your peers at UW-Madison would that be?

  3. ahs

    The clown we have as governor used the word “jobs” more than any other politician. He has NOTHING to do with Wisconsin getting more jobs that actually pay a living. This has become clearer since he has been in office. We’d love to see this man ousted from the governorship!

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