Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Charting joblessness, big banks getting bigger

A group called Remapping Debate, which aims to broaden public policy discussions, released an interactive chart today that shows interesting changes in unemployment and underemployment rates nationwide. "Using 'Alternative Measures of Labor Force Underutilization for States' produced by the Bureau of Labor Statistics," the group said their chart, "shows the average annual percentage of the civilian labor force that falls into each of four categories of unemployment and underemployment in each of the 50 states for the years 2003 to 2010."

North Carolina moved down in the rankings of the unemployed and underemployed in the nation from 2009 to 2010. It was 10th in 2009 and is 14th in 2010. That means more state's had higher unemployment and underemployment than North Carolina did in 2010 than in 2009. South Carolina also moved down in the rankings from 4th in 2009 to 9th in 2010.

Take a look at their chart, and see how unemployment and underemployment has changed in each state since 2003. Move the slider in the upper left-hand side of the chart and you can see the figures change dramatically over the years. We can only wistfully look back at 2003 and wish for a 6.5 percent unemployment rate in North Carolina. South Carolina's rate was 6.8 percent that year.

The chart includes includes the unemployment rates, the percentage of the civilian labor force that is working part-time for economic reasons — meaning individuals who want to be working full-time but are unable to find full-time employment, marginally attached workers — workers who had looked for a job sometime in the prior year, but who had not searched for a job anytime in the prior month, and discouraged workers — a subset of marginally attached workers that who, when asked why they had not searched for work in the prior month, gave the specific reason that they believed no jobs were available for them.

On the whole, the chart is discouraging to look at.


The group used info from the Financial Stability Board at the Bank of International Settlements to release another chart listing the 29 financial institutions the board deemed to be “globally systemically important.” Eight of those banks are in the United States, and of course one, Bank of America, is headquartered right here in Charlotte. These are the banks worldwide that are, ahem, too big to fail. Royal Bank of Scotland tops the list. BofA comes in at No. 12. Wells Fargo, which absorbed Wachovia, comes in at No. 20. Turns out these banks are even bigger than they were in 2008 when the shenanigans of some helped push the U.S. into a recession. Are they now too, too big to fail?

Fannie Flono


GottaBchittenme said...

Here's an animated unemployment map for every county in the U.S.

Watch the dates as it plays.

kantstanzya said...

Ms. Flonno,

I'm trying to figure out what connection you are trying to make between rising unemployment and banks getting bigger? Because of the recession hundreds of smaller banks have failed or been bought out leaving fewer, larger ones in the marketplace. This happens in every industry in economic downturns.

You state "these banks are even bigger than they were in 2008 when the shennanigans of some helped push the U.S. into a recession." What exactly were these shennanigans you claim? I don't remember any arrests. I don't remember any indictments.

The recession was caused by the busting of the housing bubble. The housing bubble was begun by the Federal governemnt who required private banks and Freddie and Fannie to make loans to people who couldn't pay them back to increase home ownership for low income people and people with bad credit. Because these loans were federally guaranteed Wall Street made what seemed like a quite rational risk/reward decision to bundle them together and use them as high return investment vehicles.

Obviously with the crash in housing prices this wasn't such a good decision. But there were no "shennanigans." There is blame to go around but the #1 villain was the Federal Government (under several administrations) meddling in the private sector and trying to influence who should recieve mortgages by forcing institutions to make these loans. The current administration is making things worse by continuing to meddle in the private sector.

No bank is "too big to fail". The U,S. Government, as we slip closer to Greece, Italy etc.financially with our debts and deficits is not too big to fail either.