Professors document slow recovery

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Rich McDonald, economics professor

Rich McDonald, economics professor and co-author of the St. Cloud Area Quarterly Business Report.

Rich McDonald, economics professor King Banaian, economics professor 

Economists King Banaian and Rich MacDonald report that a majority of area businesses are feeling greater than normal uncertainty in the midst of a slow and uneven economic recovery.

The St. Cloud State professors and authors of the St. Cloud Area Quarterly Business Report note that five of 11 private economic sectors experienced job losses in the second quarter.

Yet, overall employment conditions are greatly improved over a year ago. The August 2009 index of employment was -5. Last month it was 17.

Published this week, the St. Cloud Area Quarterly Business Report is a collaboration of the St. Cloud Area Economic Development Partnership, Times Media and these St. Cloud State entities: the Center for Economic Education, the Department of Economics and the Social Science Research Institute.

View the Summer 2010 report (PDF).

More than 60 percent of area businesses surveyed said August 2010 local economic conditions were weaker than normal.

And, the report's probability of recession index rose to 87 percent -- meaning there is an 87 percent chance of being in recession in the next four to six months.

Only seven single-family home permits were issued in August in the six-city St. Cloud area. 

St. Cloud Times help-wanted advertising lineage declined from May to July. 

Among the bright notes on the report:

  • The public sector, particularly the state and federal government, added jobs at a 3.8 percent rate over the year ending July 2010
  • Business incorporations rose over the previous quarter
  • Second quarter home sales were up over the same quarter in 2009

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