The Richmond-based Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis issued a report entitled, “The Long Road to Recovery,” today indicating that a recovery in the state’s job market to pre-recession levels will be a daunting task, to say the least.
In a conference call with journalists this morning, the institute’s executive director Michael Cassidy noted the report’s finding that a minimum of 12,000 new jobs will be to be created each month for the next two years to achieve pre-recession levels of employment in the state, and that nothing near that number has been achieved since the Great Depression.
Since 2007, the great recession has created a 200,000 “job gap” for Virginia, taking into account the combination of lost jobs and population growth, and there is no clear indicator of when or how that gap will be made up, according to the report. It noted that the most jobs ever created in one month in Virginia was 10,680 in 1996. The report also indicates that household incomes will suffer from persisting high unemployment levels, concluding that by 2014 Virginia workers in the middle of the income distribution will have actually lost ground, earning less in 2014 than they did in 2007.
“People’s income is the core building block for their standards of living and for the growth of our economy. This sobering finding shows that most people will see their income sliding for many years to come as they try to recover from the impacts of the recession,” Cassidy said. “The negative growth will act as a real drag on consumer spending and family economic security.”