By Collin Roth
On Thursday, the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development issued new job numbers for February 2012 that shows Wisconsin added 8,300 jobs. 4,000 private sector jobs were added in February in addition to 4,300 jobs in the public sector. Together with the revised January 2012 numbers that show job growth at 13,800, Wisconsin has added a total of 22,100 jobs in a two month span in Wisconsin after tepid job growth in 2011.
The new jobs report comes on the heels of a positive report from the Philadelphia Federal Reserve which forcasts Wisconsin’s economy will grow by 1.95% over the next six months.
According to the Department of Workforce Development, unemployment remained stable at 6.9%, the lowest rate since December 2008 and well below the national unemployment rate of 8.3%. Wisconsin’s unemployment rate has improved by 0.7% from February 2011 and remains lower than other Midwest states including Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio.
The creation of 22,100 new jobs in 2012 is certainly a boon for the state which saw tepid job growth in 2011.
Nevertheless, jobs creators have signaled that Wisconsin is moving in the right direction as surveys from the Wisconsin Manufacturers and Commerce show an overwhelming belief that Wisconsin is heading in the right direction (a whopping 94% of those surveyed), and Wisconsin jumped 17 places in Chief Executive magazines Best/Worst States For Business.
Governor Scott Walker was elected in 2010 promising the creation of 250,000 jobs in his four year term. The first term governor is facing a recall election this summer just over a year into his first term.
UPDATED AT 1:37: Our initial report noted that Wisconsin added 24,000 jobs in 2012. This was based on January 2012’s preliminary figures that showed Wisconsin added 15,700 jobs. Those numbers have since been revised with this latest report to 13,800 for January, thus affecting the total job creation in 2012.