Let’s Hope They Are Right

October 27, 2009 7:47 am

by Erick · 5 comments

This would be good news.

It seems to be too rosy of an employment picture, but I hope he’s right.

After a few more rough quarters, University of West Georgia economist William “Joey” Smith predicted today that local and state unemployment will fall dramatically beginning in next year’s second quarter.

At the university’s annual economic forecasting breakfast, Smith predicted that metro Atlanta’s unemployment rate would drop to 9.2 percent in the second quarter, from 10.4 percent in the first quarter.

“The good news is the bad news is close to being over,” Smith said in a statement. “The recovery so far has been driven by optimism in the stock market and a bounce in consumer confidence.”

By the fourth quarter of next year, Smith said metro Atlanta’s unemployment rate would retreat to 6.5 percent. That would be an enormous decline from the current rate of 10.5 percent.

If the economy is truly going to recover and unemployment fall, hopefully our legislature can focus on some of the other big issues out there instead of worrying about declining revenue, labor issues, etc.

I’d like to think they are huddled somewhere privately drafting a comprehensive transportation plan, but you and I both know that is not happening.

Prediction: Glenn Richardson will yet again run circles around everyone else on this issue this coming year and again be a winner.

ByteMe October 27, 2009 at 7:55 am

How does “Get Nothing Done” = “Winner”?

And Joey Smith is likely wrong. The economic headwinds are still too strong for any kind of sustained recovery and certainly not any kind of recovery that Smith has modeled… unless, of course, you want to admit that the stimulus will work (since that’s the only source of increased economic activity in Georgia).

John Konop October 27, 2009 at 8:02 am

The problem is GDP growth and jobs are not always related. All a recovery means is your GDP is not shrinking anymore. In fact most the profits are be driven by cutbacks not large expansion.

The real question is will this be a jobless recovery?

ByteMe October 27, 2009 at 8:12 am

The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ “birth-death model” will underestimate new company creation and make it seem that way, yes.

Icarus October 27, 2009 at 8:11 am

Wow. Those guys in the Econ department at West Georgia are smoking the good stuff.

I’ll try to make time to get to the actual article later today to see what sector(s) are going to ramp up employment to take unemployment down 4% in 14 months.

Construction – dead
Banking & Finance – mortally wounded
Transportation & Airlines – They don’t like $100 oil
Government – still choking on revenue estimates
Telecom – steady, but don’t know where “new” jobs would come from

I think we’re at a point where we can see some slight improvement, but a 6.5% unemployment projection for Q4 2010 can only be the product of a hash pipe.

griftdrift October 27, 2009 at 8:16 am

They obviously have a better connection than me. I’m ganja green with envy.

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