Slow Job Recovery for NC Metros

By Wilson Borntrager Posted May 28, 2014 at 3:57 pm

North Carolina unemployment rates in the metro areas may be steadily decreasing, but not quite fast enough to make up for the losses suffered from the “Great Recession.”

The Division of Employment Security stated in a recent press release that 10 of the state’s 14 metro areas have not yet reclaimed the jobs that were lost over the course of the recession. Six of these metro areas will take more than a decade to create enough jobs to return to the numbers they had given their current employment growth rates.

“This is really the most important measuring stick for every jobs report: are we creating enough jobs to meet the needs of workers who want jobs?” says Public Policy Analyst with the North Carolina Budget and Tax Center, Allan Freyer. “The first test of that is whether we have created enough jobs to dig ourselves out of the hole that was created during the Great Recession.”

Freyer states that the Chapel Hill area is making the right steps in making jobs. “Durham-Chapel Hill has done really well. Over the last year, Durham-Chapel Hill gained about 4,400 jobs. They’ve created 6,000 jobs since the end of the recession, so it is one of the few metro areas that have seen positive growth.”

As for the upcoming year, Freyer says that the Chapel Hill area will continue to open up opportunities for those who need them.

“I do think Durham-Chapel Hill will continue to add jobs. They have already reclaimed enough jobs to fill the hole created by the recession,” assures Freyer. “I think for many of these other metro areas, several of them will, in all likelihood, by the end of this year, create enough jobs to get back to where they were in 2007.

Freyer also warns that there needs to be a change for other metro areas in order for greater job growth to happen.

“For a lot of these other metro areas, they have many, many, many years left to go to get back to where they were before the recession began, if they keep creating jobs at the present rate.”

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