The Department of Employment and Economic Development released Minnesota job information today and it was more bad news. Minnesota’s unemployment rate jumped up one half percent from 5.9 percent in October to 6.4 percent in November. This is the highest unemployment rate in Minnesota since the first half of 1984. The number of unemployed in Minnesota reached 188,925, the highest level since March of 1983.
State Economist Tom Stinson has predicted that Minnesota could lose as many as 50,000 jobs over the next year as the recession deepens. This would bring the level of unemployment to the highest level during the entire thirty year period for which data are available.
In light of the bleak economic outlook, now would be a good time for Minnesota to make public investments that would enhance our educational system and infrastructure. This would provide employment in the short term and enhance workforce development and transportation in the long term.