Monthly Archives: June 2014

How did the Skills Gap descend so quickly?

“The structure of a modern economy does not change that quickly. The demographic composition of the labor force, its educational breakdown and even the industrial mix did not differ much between 2007 and 2009.” –Edward Lazear WHILE doing some research on a post re: the skills gap in Maine, I came across something rather interesting.  […]

Boomers Comprise Larger Percentage of Maine Workforce

AN analysis done by Economic Modeling Specialists International and Career Builder (the site has an interactive map that I cannot properly embed here) examined the change in employment levels for millennials and baby-boomers in the nation’s 175 metro areas.  The analysis found that boomers are comprising a larger percentage of the workforce, while employment for […]

College Student Loan Debt: A Tale of Two Time Periods

THE Brookings Institute released a study earlier this week arguing that “the impact of student loans may not be as dire as many commentators fear.”  The authors of the study arrive at this conclusion by examining data from the Federal Reserve tracking student loan debt between 1989 and 2010.  Their key findings include: Roughly one-quarter […]

Maine Jobs Report, Personal Income Data, and Coincident Index: Cautious Optimism

LAST week, the jobs data published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics showed that Maine’s unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5.7%, but that the economy 4,900 jobs.  While these numbers indicate steady growth, there are reasons the data should call for cautious optimism. First, the 4,900 jobs were the single biggest month-over-month increase during the […]

Maine Unemployment Rate Unchanged

FROM the BLS: Regional and state unemployment rates were generally little changed in May.  Twenty states had unemployment rate decreases from April, 16 states had increases, and 14 states and the District of Columbia had no change, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Forty-nine states and the District of Columbia had unemployment rate […]

Gasoline Taxes and Infrastructure Spending

AS reported by the AP, and published in the PPH, Sens. Chris Murphy (D-Min) and Bob Corker (R-Ten) are proposing to raise gasoline taxes by 12 cents and subsequently indexing it to inflation, offsetting that increase with tax cuts elsewhere.  The move would help keep the Highway Trust Fund solvent, and increase the gas tax […]

An Oddity in the Maine Economic Recovery

BINYAMIN Appelbaum at the New York Times has a new article arguing that measuring the recent economic recovery should focus on the number of employed rather than the unemployed.  Specifically, rather than focusing on the unemployment rate (which can be misleading since it does not count discouraged workers who give up looking for a job […]

Who in Maine benefits from a $10.10 Minimum Wage?

A report recently released by Oxfam America shows that 112,000 workers in Maine, 20.2% of workers, would benefit from an increase in the minimum wage to $10.10–the Democrats’ proposed minimum wage hike which has stirred up debate about the impacts such as raise would have on employment. The U.S. average for total workers benefiting from a […]