Report: Moderate Job Growth In Columbus For 2011

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A new economic snapshot shows net job growth in Central Ohio in 2011. But, a top economist likened the region’s jobs picture to a puzzle. WOSU’s Tom Borgerding reports.

A panel of economists served a helping of hope at the Columbus Metropolitan Club dubbed the Blue Chip economic forecast. Chamber of Commerce chief economist Bill Lafayette says Franklin and surrounding counties will see a net jobs gain of 2,500 this year compared to a net loss of 800 jobs in 2010. Lafayette says the source of job growth has changed in the past twelve months.

“Most of the strong growth that we were seeing a year ago was stimulus. But most of the growth more recently was driven by consumer spending and business investment.”

Lafayette predicts job gains in business services and wholesale trade. He says manufacturing, media, and state and local government will likely suffer job losses this year. The Central Ohio economy supports 900,000 jobs. 80,000 individuals are unemployed and 35,000 area residents are now classified as discouraged workers who have left the job market.

Tom Borgerding WOSU News