Detroit's Unemployment Rate Is Nearly 50% 31 replies

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#1 8 years ago

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/12/16/detroits-unemployment-rat_n_394559.

Officially, Detroit's unemployment rate is just under 30 percent. But the city's mayor and local leaders are suggesting a far more disturbing figure -- the actual jobless rate, they say, is closer to 50 percent.

As many have noted, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which culls federal unemployment data, does not account for all of the jobless in its widely-quoted national unemployment figures. Among those omitted: part-time workers who are looking for full-time jobs and frustrated job seekers who abandon their job search altogether.

(For some context, the official national unemployment rate is 10 percent, but the "underemployment rate" is 17.2 percent.)

Detroit city officials argue that, when workers who are underemployed are added to the calculation, the number of city residents who are out of work is close to one in every two.

The Detroit News reports:

"The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated that for the year that ended in September, Michigan's official unemployment rate was 12.6 percent. Using the broadest definition of unemployment, the state unemployment rate was 20.9 percent, or 66 percent higher than the official rate. Since Detroit's official rate for October was 27 percent, that broader rate pushes the city's rate to as high as 44.8 percent."

The alarming numbers coming from Detroit officials are supported by another set of recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which stand in harsh contrast to the more positive national employment picture. The jobless rate in the Detroit MSA (metropolitan statistical area) increased 7.3 percentage points in just one year, the highest increase for any metro area in the nation.

Statewide, Michigan still leads the nation in official unemployment, with a rate of 15.1 percent. Homelessness, especially among those becoming homeless for the first time, is expected to jump at least 10 percent this year.

The employment situation, as The Detroit News suggests, is actually significantly worse for men in Detroit:

For a variety or reasons -- access to transportation, job availability and work skills -- an estimated 48.5 percent of male Detroiters ages 20 to 64 didn't have a job in 2008, according to census figures. For Michigan, it's 26.6 percent; for the United States, 21.7 percent.

The paper's calculations back up Mayor Dave Bing's assertion at last week's White House Jobs Summit that Detroit's unemployment rate was "probably close to 50 percent." Bing was in Washington to press the federal government to channel more money directly into city clean-up projects and infrastructure development. "We've got projects that are shovel-ready," he pleaded.

:eek:

Can anybody from Detriot confirm this? I mean, fifty fucking percent. Holy cow...




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#2 8 years ago

I haven't heard anything recently about the unemployment rates, but I can confirm that Detroit is a black hole in the map of America that sucks in joy and happiness and crushes it into a dense mass of tears and despair.

Of course, it's pretty much been that way since the 50s, so it's not like this is news. Just, like always, Detroit has been hit harder by the current recession then other places.




Sadim-Al-Bouncer

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#3 8 years ago

Holy shitski... I guess part of it was the auto crisis a short time ago, although some could argue it's still going on. No doubt there needs to be action soon.




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#4 8 years ago
Afterburner;5171151I haven't heard anything recently about the unemployment rates, but I can confirm that Detroit is a black hole in the map of America that sucks in joy and happiness and crushes it into a dense mass of tears and despair.

Yeah. I've always thought of St. Louis as a microcosmic example of misery, crime, and bad reputation compared to Detriot. East St. Louis even more so.

Of course, it's pretty much been that way since the 50s, so it's not like this is news. Just, like always, Detroit has been hit harder by the current recession then other places.

When the social safety net starts to unhinge, I'd recommend for you to get the hell out so fast you see flames fly out of your ass.




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#5 8 years ago

My friend is actually heading up there in a few days, so I'll ask her when she is back. Personally, I can believe that number. Since the 1990's, Detroit, and all of Michigan have been affected by NAFTA, outsourcing, and ultimately, the complete closing down of companies after this economic crisis. Most of the people in Michigan worked in the automobile industry, either for companies like Ford, GM, or Chrysler, or support companies like Delphi or Visteon that built parts for cars.

The first problem was NAFTA, which saw the labor force move to Mexico and Canada, instead of it being entirely Americans working on American cars. Companies started outsourcing labor and even tech jobs overseas, leaving diminished opportunities in the U.S., and when the economy collapsed, the automobile industry was hit very hard. Actually, they were hit hard before the economy collapsed, probably when the recent gas prices started going up.

A ton of those support companies have gone into bankruptcy and Ford is the only one of the "Big 3" that didn't go into bankruptcy. Now, the causes of the Big 2 (GM and Chrysler) going under is more than just an economy collapsing, it has to do with the entire company's structures: Labor demands too high to meet, products that were not competitive, changing demands in product desires (went from size and safety to fuel efficiency), poor product management and planning (short-term gains with SUVs), etc.

Basically since the manufacturing base has collapsed in the United States, Detroit was the epicenter of all the bad effects. It won't improve until a new industry starts to gain ground, whether that is start-up car companies like Tesla or Fisker that need the skilled auto worker force, or green energy companies that have a few seeds being planted in Michigan (not Detroit, that I know of).




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#6 8 years ago

I wouldn't be surprised. The major employers in Detroit are really only the big three automakers, their subsidiaries (and we know how they are doing, Ford may come out okay though) and the government which is a cesspool of corruption from top to bottom. Its no wonder the money doesn't trickle down to the people or to entice business when it is lining the pockets of the bureaucrats all the way down the line.


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#7 8 years ago

Detroit's problem go back a lot farther then NAFTA and other recent developments. Starting in the 50s and 60s Detroit saw a tremendous amount of outsourcing from the inner-city out into the suburbs and also to other states further south. Indiana, Tennessee, Alabama, and other states greatly benefited from this. All of the problems that the rest of the U.S. is experiencing with outsourcing to other countries is just more of the same for Detroit.

Michigan had and still has an incredibly strong union presence, which means employing Michigan workers is more expensive then other states. Detroit was hit worse then the rest Michigan and the rest of the U.S. by all of this simply because the city was the center of production before the 50s. Had things progressed differently Detroit would have handily surpassed New York, Chicago, or L.A. as being one of the major cities of America.

To be honest I have no idea how Michigan and Detroit might solve their problems. I know Michigan as a whole has been pushing to diversify the economy, but most companies are turned off to moving into the city of Detroit itself. There is a growing number of green industries in Michigan, as Phoenix points out, and we also have a rapidly building foothold in the film industry, but none of it seems to be benefiting Detroit at all.




Sadim-Al-Bouncer

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#8 8 years ago

It's funny how Ford was the only one that got by without government aid. I always thought they'd be the first to go.




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#9 8 years ago

50%? Honestly I'm suprised, I would have thought it would be more like 90%. Detroit is probably the hardest hit city in the US. They're economy is solely based on the auto industry, which has been in decline for a very long time. The resession just sped up the progress. Detriot is a gigantic ghetto now, I bet the people in the Bronx are like, "Hey! They are more ghetto than us!" :lulz:




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#10 8 years ago
Red Menace;5171190Its no wonder the money doesn't trickle down to the people or to entice business when it is lining the pockets of the bureaucrats all the way down the line.

Not only bureaucrats, but bankers and corporate scumfucks as well. Trickle on is more like it.