Metro Areas To Recover Some Jobs In 2012
Job growth in metropolitan areas will pick up this year, but despite positive trends unemployment is not expected to dip below eight percent, according to a report released this week.
The report [PDF], which was prepared for the U.S. Council of Mayors by economics researcher IHS Global Insight, urges managed expectations in spite of recent signs of job recovery. Fewer than ten percent of metropolitan areas have regained the jobs they lost during the 2009 recession, according to the report.
“This is the most protracted period of underemployment in U.S. economic history since the Great Depression and World War II,” reads the report. “All subsequent recessions in the 20th century saw payroll jobs quickly regain previous peak levels with a strong first year of economic recovery.”
The metropolitan areas hit hardest by the recession, many located in the Southwest, will take five more years to recover, according to the report. Researchers also expressed concern that the national deficit will pose a long-term challenge to economic wellbeing.
The report also cites declining real household income and income inequality as challenges as challenges to economic recovery.
However, almost all areas are expected to see job growth over the course of 2012. Last year was the first since the recession in which the country saw net employment gains.
The authors are also critical of Congress, which they see as undermining consumer confidence by gridlocking on issues including the national debt.
“The economic recovery is too slow, and it is a direct result of the inaction of this Congress in 2011,” said Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who serves as president of the organization, in a press release. “If we gave the 112th Congress a mid-term report card, the grade would be clear. Congress would get an ‘F.’”
Meanwhile, the White House has started to follow up on efforts to promote “insourcing” foreign jobs back to the United States, according to a press release issued this week. A number of initiatives recommended by the non-partisan Jobs Council will be implemented by the administration, focusing on education, manufacturing and regulatory reform.
The United States Conference of Mayors is a national organization that promotes federal policy beneficial to large municipalities. It was established in 1932.
Jon Christian is a reporter with Campus Progress. Follow him on Twitter @Jon_Christian.
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