Slow job growth in North Carolina

Date posted: March 20, 2012

The good news is that the number of jobs has increased during the past two years. The bad news is the pace of job improvement in North Carolina has been especially slow. Job growth in our state has been only one-third as fast as in the nation. N.C. State University economist Mike Walden explains why.

“Well, what we typically do to answer that question is … look at how the economy, for example, in North Carolina differs from the economy in the U.S. in terms of what particular economic sectors have seen big changes. And we do see some major differences between the nation and North Carolina.

“So, for example, construction jobs: We’ve actually seen a modest increase over the last two years in construction jobs nationwide, but they’re still down in North Carolina. In fact they’ve dropped 4 percent over the last two years.

“Now manufacturing jobs, they have increased over the last two years in both the U.S. and North Carolina. But the rate of increase has been 10 times faster in the U.S. than in our state.

“And we get the same result for example looking at tourism jobs.

“There’s one been one bright spot in this job comparison for North Carolina when you compare the nation, and that is in information jobs, or so-called tech jobs. The number of tech jobs or information jobs nationwide has been relatively flat, but it has actually modestly increased in North Carolina.”

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