Dr. Charles Steindel, the State’s Chief Economist, titled his March report: “A Strong Start for the Year Gives Reason for Hope” He went on to point out, “The job numbers for January and February show the upward momentum that became evident in 2011 continues. A total of 17,500 jobs were created in New Jersey over the two months.”
Well Dr. Steindel, the State’s Labor Department just reported the data for March: there was a Total Private Job Loss of 11,600 and Government Job gain of 3,000. The net result was that 8,600 jobs were lost in March, substantially reducing the gains of January and February and reducing your “reason for hope.” Optimism is nice, but I guess it’s not for nothing that economics is sometimes called “a dismal science.”
Dr. Steindel in his March report went on to say, “The jobless rate was 9 percent in both January and February. Continued job growth at the recent pace will bring unemployment down.” It’s a good thing he did not predict when unemployment will go down because it remains at 9%.
Following the more sobering March news Dr.Steindel has now issued a pollyannaish and vague prediction, “The majority of indicators suggest that New Jersey employment growth will continue over the long term, creating a stronger economy for everyone.” That’s nice to hear, but I wonder how long is “the long term,” and I see no sign that the Christie administration is truly concerned about “everyone.”
I guess we are witnessing economics Christie style.