Northeast Minnesota Job Seekers Outnumber Job Openings 7-to-1
The latest Job Vacancy Survey from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development shows that in Northeast Minnesota there are 12,600 unemployed workers competing for 1,700 unfilled jobs. This means that job seekers now outnumber job openings by 7-to-1.**
In the Arrowhead region, job openings fell 56 percent in just six months.
Other major findings for Northeast Minnesota include:
Of the five occupational groups with the most job openings, only one offers a median wage higher than $11 per hour. ***
The median wage for all openings increased by 45 percent to $12 per hour.
Unfortunately, the rise in the regional median wage was not caused by adding more good jobs but by losing more bad jobs. For example, the food preparation and serving occupational group has 90 percent fewer openings than it had six months ago.
One out of four openings in the region still pays less than $9 per hour. JOBS NOW’s updated Cost of Living research shows that in a Northeast Minnesota family of four with both parents working, each worker must earn at least $12.07 per hour to meet basic needs. ****
* The Arrowhead Economic Region consists of the following counties: Aitkin, Carlton, Cook, Itasca, Koochiching, Lake and St. Louis.
** http://www.deed.state.mn.us/lmi/publications/jobvacancy.htm. Figures for job seekers and job openings are from fourth quarter 2008.
*** A median is a midway point; half of the jobs are above it, half below.
**** To see the updated Cost of Living in Minnesota research by county, click the Family Wage and Budget Calculator link on JOBS NOW’s Web site at www.jobsnowcoalition.org.