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Where are all our jobs going?

Latest study on "America's Top State for Business" in all 50 states ranks Massachusetts #28

They will be heading to Texas and Utah apparently.  At least according to CNBC's latest study of America's Top States for Business

Massachusetts' economy is suffering.  It looks like we will soon be home only to those attending college, too poor to move or so wealthy they don't need a job. The rest of us who must work to support ourselves and our families will have to have moved somewhere else to survive.

While I understand that we are an older state and we don't want to be over developed, but we have now fallen behind more that HALF the country.  We are behind Illinois!  Chicago has over 11,000 people per square mile to Boston's under 7,000 per square mile.

Is this what is best for the people of Massachusetts? Please share your thoughts!

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Jerry Reilly July 11, 2012 at 03:40 PM
>> Where are all our jobs going? I don't think the jobs are going anywhere. We're near the top of the list (#11) in employment - (http://www.bls.gov/web/laus/laumstrk.htm/). We certainly should aim for boosting ourselves into the top 10. That CNBC study is not ranking how well the economy of each state is doing for its citizens (unemployment, median income, etc). It is ranking how well each state does on a business wish list - low taxes, low union membership, etc. Its interesting that Texas, CNBC's #1 rank state is #20 in employment (vs Mass at #11) and Texas's median income is way below Mass. So while its worth thinking about the implications of this CNBC study, it hardly indicates "all our jobs are going". I'd only be alarmed if our goal was to become a low wage/low tax/low service state. That's not my goal.
Greer Tan Swiston July 11, 2012 at 04:15 PM
You raise a good issue and that is that we should, of course consider how the data is collected. I always respect your posts, Mr. Reilly (and enjoy your blog as well). But, I the problem I've always had with the unemployment rate is that it is calculated based on only people who are looking for work (see http://www.bls.gov/cps/cps_htgm.htm#where ). Some one who isn't working but isn't looking for work doesn't count in the labor force, so doesn't get factored in. It does say something that only 6% of those looking for work in Massachusetts, haven't found one yet. I appreciate that these statistics invite us to dig deeper.
Jerry Reilly July 11, 2012 at 04:32 PM
Yes, I agree that the official unemployment rates don't really tell the whole story, especially in a prolonged downturn like now - they can sometimes be deceiving.
Jerry Reilly July 11, 2012 at 04:33 PM
p.s. It's nice to hear that you enjoy my blog posts - thanks
Greer Tan Swiston July 12, 2012 at 02:04 AM
So, the real concern is that we dropped 22 places just in the last year. What can be done differently? It seems to me, a "low hanging fruit" would be to address the category of "Business Friendliness". It accounts for one of the biggest drops in ranking for Massachusetts in this study. This category is judged based on state regulations and the perceived “friendliness” of legal and regulatory frameworks to business. I've spoken to many business owners and top on their list of factors contributing to deciding where to locate their business is stability and familiarity. The market and the impacts of our global economy inject enough uncertainty into their business projections, that a community with a clear set of rules and expectations with consistent and reliable reactions to actions goes far in attracting these business owners. Oregon (a state now ranked #18 up from being ranked #27 last year ... see http://www.cnbc.com/id/46415400) has had a plan place that started in 2010. The Oregon Business Council has a whole website up about it at http://www.oregonbusinessplan.org ... there is a great page about simplifying and streamlining regulation and permitting http://www.oregonbusinessplan.org/Initiatives/Simplify-and-Streamline-Regulation-and-Permitting.aspx

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