Analysists: Ohio jobs report paints good picture
Mon, Mar 13, 2023 1:20 PM
By J.D. Davidson, The Center Square
Unemployment fell and the labor participation rate remained steady, prompting some analysts to call Ohio’s January jobless report positive.
The January report, released by the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, showed the state’s unemployment rate fell to 4% from 4.1% in December, while the labor participation rate stayed flat at 61.2%.
There is a concern, according to Rea Hederman Jr., executive director of the Economic Research Center and vice president of policy at The Buckeye Institute. Both figures fall behind national numbers.
“The falling unemployment rate and steady labor force participation rate means that Ohioans in the job market are finding work. Although this is good news, it is concerning that Ohio still lags the nation, which had an unemployment rate of 3.4% in January and more people entering the job market,” Hederman said.
According to the report, Ohio added 12,600 jobs in January, while the annual revisions for 2022 say the state added an additional 36,000 private sector jobs last year. That pushed the state total to 130,000 new private jobs, remaining 14,000 fewer than in February 2020.
“With solid monthly job growth in January and significant upward revisions to job growth in 2022, the jobs report is good news for Ohio,” Hederman said. “While policymakers should be pleased, they must focus on the fact that Ohio continues to lag the nation.”
Michael Shields, a senior researcher at Policy Matters Ohio, also called the January figures good news that painted a positive picture for the state’s economy.
He pointed to federal policies that drove the numbers higher.
Today’s revised job numbers are resoundingly good news. This benchmark revision cuts the number of jobs reported missing from Ohio by more than half. Combined with moderating inflation levels, this is a great picture for Ohio’s jobs economy,” Shields said. “Smart federal policy has driven this robust recovery, in contrast to the tide of government spending cuts that made Ohio’s recovery from the Great Recession such a long slog.”