Naturally, the state Democratic party seized on the numbers to lay blame on the GOP-crafted state budget enacted for all of two months for the unemployment rise.
Today, the Employment Security Commission announced that North Carolina’s jobless rate rose to 10.4% due to the disastrous consequences of the Republican budget.
“This increase in unemployment is a direct result of the job-killing Republican budget that took effect in June,” said David Parker, Chairman of the North Carolina Democratic Party.
First off, it is ridiculous to start laying blame (or taking credit) for any state budget impact on unemployment after just two months. But let’s play that game for a moment, and examine the employment numbers a little more closely. To focus in on the state budget’s impact, we should concentrate on state government employment numbers and total private sector employment numbers – with federal and local government employee counts being largely beyond the scope of the state budget’s impact.
For this, we can turn to the Current Employment Statistics (CES) data. According to that report, state employment in June 2011 – the last month of the previous year’s budget – stood at 180,300. For August, that number had dipped to 175,600 – for a loss of 4,700. For private sector employment, the total in June was 3,224,300. By August, that number had reached 3,233,300 – for an increase of 9,000 jobs. (Note: for consistency, both sets of job figures are not seasonally-adjusted; the seasonally-adjusted private sector job numbers are not yet available).
In short, netting out the loss of state government jobs with private sector job gains yields a net increase of 4,300 jobs in the first two months of the current year state budget. Not exaclty the “disasterous results” the NCDC and other political demagogues are portraying.
Again, its silly for folks on either side of the discussion to draw any conclusions just two months into the new budget. But if you are going to, at least do a little research before issuing a press release.