The economic recovery continues in Wisconsin, producing new jobs in the state, though still not enough to go back to pre-recession levels. New data from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that Wisconsin added 8,000 jobs in April. Considering gains in April and March, the state has recovered all the jobs lost in February’s decline. The upward trajectory appears relatively consistent but remains quite slow. More than six years since the beginning of the recession, Wisconsin is still far from the jobs recovery workers need.
Wisconsin’s job deficit now stands at 127,730. That total deficit consists of two parts. First, Wisconsin still has 24,100 fewer jobs than in 2007 before the beginning of Great Recession. Second, just to keep up with population growth, Wisconsin needs to add another 103,630 jobs above the 2007 level. These two numbers added together – 127,730 – account for the current Wisconsin Job Deficit.
Anemic job growth over the course of the recovery has failed to close the gap. And Wisconsin’s jobs recovery lags even the slow pace of the national one. Nationally, the labor market is about to return to pre-recession levels. Wisconsin still hasn’t made it up to that level. The job deficit means that too many workers are still waiting to find a job or to have greater security and hours in their current job. Adding 8,000 jobs per month (as we did in April) still puts closing the Wisconsin Job Deficit some 15 months away.