« Why is North Carolina's unemployment rate so high? | Main | Do we need the Federal Reserve? »

April 27, 2009

When will the job news get better?

The jobless numbers keep climbing and climbing. We now have some counties in North Carolina with unemployment rates over 12 percent. When will it end? Is there even any dim light shining at the end of this tunnel?

Dr. Mike Walden, North Carolina Cooperative Extension economist in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at N.C. State University, responds:

"These job losses in our state are really unprecedented over the last 70 years, and one of the, I think, troubling things, is there's really nowhere to hide. All sectors in our economy - we're even beginning to see it in health care - have been losing jobs. Unfortunately, most economists see job losses continuing for most of 2009. If the economy does begin to recover at the end of the year as most economists predict, we should see the job market begin to improve after that, maybe by a lag of three to six months. So we're looking maybe at spring, summer of 2010 before we would expect the unemployment rate to start to go down. The reason for this is there's always a delayed response in the job market because employers want to be absolutely certain the economy is back before they go to the very important and often expensive task of hiring new people. So I think for the rest of this year, we'll probably see the unemployment rate in the state go up - but not at the pace that we have seen - so that's, perhaps, one good thing and then, hopefully, top out maybe about a year from now, and then start to fall throughout 2010."

Posted by Dave at April 27, 2009 08:13 AM