For the past three months, Arizona’s unemployment rate has gone up, even as the nation’s jobless rate has dropped for most of that time. Right now, the state’s unemployment rate of 5.8 percent is nearly a full percentage point higher than the national average. Dennis Hoffman, director of the L. William Seidman Research Institute at the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, will talk about why Arizona’s jobless rate is not improving.
Although the nation’s unemployment rate fell in August, fewer jobs than expected were added, with the jobless rate dropping due to fewer people looking for work. Economist Jim Rounds of Elliott D. Pollack and Company will discuss the employment situation.
Federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation benefits started to help people during the recession, ended recently, impacting 12,100 Arizona families. The Grand Canyon Institute, a private non-profit corporation that provides non-partisan research, has analyzed the economic impact of the loss of extended federal unemployment benefits. David Wells, research director for the institute, will talk about the impact.
Arizona’s jobless rate went up in all 11 sectors last month, at a time when the national rate remained stable. Arizona State University Economist Lee McPheters will talk about what’s happening with Arizona’s unemployment rate.
Is the economy finally turning the corner? There are some signs that the recession is at least slowing. Three Arizona State University economists, Jay Butler, Herb Kaufman and Dennis Hoffman, talk about unemployment, the recession and the state and national economies in a Horizon Economic Roundtable.
In these tough economic times, the need for government assistance is increasing. Pat Harrington of the Arizona Department of Economic Security will talk about the increased demand for unemployment benefits and Judith Fritsch of D.E.S. will talk about the increased need for other services such as food stamps, medical insurance and welfare.