With sincere wishes for strong nationwide recovery soon, and not to harp on the continuing strength in Austin’s economy, these two pieces of news caught my eye today. I have been writing and talking for many months about how Central Texas was largely insulated from the worst effects of the recession and housing crisis. That contrast is brought into sharp focus by these articles:
National news: Jobless claims surge in the latest week
The WSJ article and DOL source indicate that some seasonal reporting issues may has biased the latest national numbers up, but if so it’s because because previous weeks may have been understated. Any way you slice that data, national employment numbers are not moving in the right direction.
As for Austin/Central Texas:
Entrepreneurship has thrived in Austin for many years, and continues to contribute in a big way.
Other analysts and forecasters may be more cautious than Angelou and Friedman, but we have been adding jobs, albeit slowly, over the past several months so I am optimistic for continuing growth this year. As I have blogged previously, the housing market in other areas can affect Austin’s ability to sustain this growth if potential employees are unable or can’t afford to sell their homes and make the move.
As pleased as I am to be in our relatively healthy local economic environment, we must never forget that in many ways we are all in this together! We still need a national surge in private sector employment. That’s the keystone for all of us.