The March 2013 Ohio by the Numbers report shows that Ohio’s private sector hit a rough patch in March, losing 16,800 private sector jobs over the month.
Ohio’s unemployment rate was 7.1 percent in March, which remains well below the national unemployment rate of 7.7 percent. The civilian labor force also decreased by 1,000 in March. However, the overall labor force decreased by 25,000 between March 2012 and 2013. The labor force participation rate remains stuck at 63.5 percent, which is .5 percent below the participation rate in March 2012. While it is a positive sign that Ohio’s unemployment rate has consistently been under the national average for over a year, the fact that labor force shrinkage has partially contributed to this phenomenon indicates the need for more pro-growth policies in order for the state to fully recover from the dismal 2000-2010 decade. Over that time, Ohio lost more private sector jobs than any other state in the country except Michigan (619,000 vs. 794,000).
Overall highlights from the report:
Within individual industry sectors: Professional and Business Services, Education and Health Services, and Leisure and Hospitality have more people employed in them today than in either 1990 or 2000. Meanwhile, Mining and Logging, Construction, Manufacturing, and Information sectors have less jobs today than in 1990 or 2000.
The report shows that Forced Union states (which includes Ohio and many of its neighbors with the exception of Indiana, which became a worker freedom state in February of 2012, and Michigan, whose recent worker freedom law became effective at the end of March 2013) had a private sector growth rate far below worker freedom states.
Between 1990 and January of 2012, Worker Freedom states’ private sector jobs grew at a 38 percent rate vs. only 13 percent for Forced Union states (11.8 million vs. 8 million). Since Indiana became a Worker Freedom state in February 2012, Worker Freedom states’ private sector jobs grew at a 2.4 percent rate vs. 1.6 percent for Forced Union states (1.1 million vs. 1 million).
Ohio by the Numbers compares Ohio to other states in overall private sector job growth over several distinct time spans. The periods analyzed are: from 1990 until the present day, from peak employment in 2000 through the present day, and from the beginning of the current decade to the present day.