Here are some facts about Jersey’s lost decade:
- There were fewer jobs in 2010 than in 2000. Employment was 3,854,500 in 2010 versus 3,994,500 in 2000.
- There were 2.7 times as many people unemployed in 2010 than in 2000: Unemployment was 425,700 in 2010 versus 157,500 in 2000. The unemployment rate increased from 3.7 per cent at the peak of the business cycle in 2000 to 9.5 per cent in 2010.
- Real wages were lower for the bottom 30 per cent of wage earners in 2010 than they were in 2000.
- Real median household income for the typical household was lower in 2010 than in 2000: $63,540 in 2010 versus $63,818 in 2000.
- Income declined for the bottom 60 per cent of households, and increased by less than 2.5 per cent for the top 40 per cent over the decade.
- About 237,000 more people lived in poverty than in 2000; and the poverty rate was 10.3 per cent in 2010 versus 7.8 per cent in 2000. One out of every three persons in poverty was a child.
Jersey ranked 40 for employment growth, 25 for wage growth and 44 for cost of living (50=worst).
The recent infusion of Governor Chris Christie hasn’t helped much either. Christie, who came into office in January 2010, has claimed to have added 45,000 private-sector jobs. But from June 2010 to June 2011, New Jersey’s employment level has continued to slide while 41 states saw growth.
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