The University of Michigan today released an updated economic forecast that paints a brighter picture of the state’s jobs outlook over the next two years.
Economists now project that Michigan will add 126,100 jobs in 2011 and 2012. That’s 38,600 more jobs than they had predicted in November.
The upward revision comes as Michigan’s unemployment rate is on a steady decline. The state recently reported that the number of unemployed Michigan workers fell below 500,000 in February for the first time since November 2008. The state’s jobless rate fell to 10.4 percent in February, down from 10.7 percent in January and 13.5 percent in February 2010.
The economists now predict that Michigan will add 64,600 jobs in 2011 and 61,500 in 2012. In November, they had predicted that the state would add 24,500 jobs in 2011 and 63,000 in 2012.
The U-M economists said the crisis in Japan would “slow the pace of progress” for the U.S. auto industry, but not enough to “derail Michigan’s recovery.”
In fact, the rapid recovery in the manufacturing industry is credited with boosting the economy.
Job growth hit an annualized rate of 3.8 percent at the beginning of 2011, though that will slip to 0.8 percent in the second quarter and 1.1 percent by the end of the year, the economists projected. The rate will average 1.9 percent in 2012, they predicted.
The economists also are projecting that personal income growth will hit 5.1 percent in 2011 and 2.9 percent in 2012. Michigan residents’ personal income fell 3.1 percent in 2009 and rose 2.8 percent in 2010.
By Nathan Borney, AnnArbor.com