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NC Budget and Tax Center

While rumors swirl about a deal to re-open the federal government, the impact of the shutdown on North Carolina is becoming ever more apparent. In this week’s issue of Prosperity Watch, Tazra Mitchell looks at the consequences of the federal government shutdown on children, the most vulnerable residents of our state, and specifically at the suspension of child care subsidies that are hurting kids and forcing their parents to choose between caring for their kids and going to work. For more, see the latest issue of Prosperity Watch.

NC Budget and Tax Center

Despite a superficial improvement in North Carolina’s unemployment rate over the past three months, the state’s jobs picture remains extremely troubling, especially for the 70,000 Tarheel workers likely to lose federal extended unemployment benefits on June 30th. There are just not enough job openings available in order to meaningfully bring down unemployment rate, and as a result, thousands of the state’s workers are simply giving up on the job search and dropping out of the labor force altogether. See the latest issue of Prosperity Watch for details.

NC Budget and Tax Center

We keep hearing how North Carolina’s unemployment rate keeps lagging behind the national average. And although this trend is certainly real—the Tarheel State’s unemployment remains mired above 9 percent while the national average is below 8 percent—the latest issue of Prosperity Watch provides a surprising explanation for North Carolina’s weaker performance. See Prosperity Watch for details.

NC Budget and Tax Center

This week’s issue of Prosperity Watch grapples with an under-reported and historically unprecedented trend in North Carolina’s economy–while the state has experienced a total of more than 4 percent total growth in Gross Domestic Product from 2006 through 2011, job creation over this period has been virtually nonexistant. This trend in manufacturing is even more pronounced.

So what’s causing this troubling divergence between economic output and job creation? See the latest Prosperity Watch for details.

NC Budget and Tax Center

According to the latest issue of Prosperity Watch, North Carolina’s job growth has remained stubbornly stagnant over the last year, with the unemployment rate stuck between 9.6 and 9.4 since February 2012. Even more troubling, however, is the fact that what little employment growth the state has experienced since the end of the recession has largely occurred in low-wage service industries. In effect, the state is losing the middle-wage jobs that used to provide a pathway into the middle class for many North Carolinians and replacing them with jobs in industries that pay significantly below the state average—a boom in low-wage employment.  See the latest issue of Prosperity Watch for details.