Richard Fisher, the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, dropped by our offices this week and relayed a remarkable fact: Some 37% of all net new American jobs since the recovery began were created in Texas. Mr. Fisher’s study is a lesson in what works in economic policy—and it is worth pondering in the current 1.8% growth moment.
Using Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data, Dallas Fed economists looked at state-by-state employment changes since June 2009, when the recession ended. Texas added 265,300 net jobs, out of the 722,200 nationwide, and by far outpaced every other state. New York was second with 98,200, Pennsylvania added 93,000, and it falls off from there. Nine states created fewer than 10,000 jobs, while Maine, Hawaii, Delaware and Wyoming created fewer than 1,000. Eighteen states have lost jobs since the recovery began.
The data are even more notable because they’re calculated on a “sum of states” basis, which the BLS does not use because they can have sampling errors. Using straight nonfarm payroll employment, Texas accounts for 45% of net U.S. job creation. Modesty is not typically considered a Texas virtue, but the results speak for themselves.
Texas is also among the few states that are home to more jobs than when the recession began in December 2007. The others are North Dakota, Alaska and the District of Columbia. If that last one sounds like an outlier at first, remember the government boom of the Obama era, which has helped loft D.C. payrolls 18,000 jobs above the pre-crisis status quo. Even so, Texas is up 30,800…
Roger Kimball linked to that piece here, and he adds more to the story:
Yes, Texas: the state that is the poster child for right-wingery, the state with no state income tax whose population is growing at about 1000 per day (see a connection?) while bankrupt behemoths like California are bleeding jobs and people.
There are a handful of other places in the U.S. where job creation is rife. One of them is Washington, D.C., where an exploding government bureaucracy has also led to the creation of many jobs.
Many public-sector, i.e., tax-payer-funded jobs, that is. The jobs in Texas are overwhelmingly private-sector, i.e., wealth-creating jobs.
I mention this by way of introduction to my main point, which is to highlight something Texas Governor Rick Perry said in a recent speech in New Orleans. Addressing a friendly crowd, the governor urged listeners to “stop apologizing” for their efforts to overturn the “entitlement mindset.” “Stand up” and be counted, he advised: “Our opponents on the left are never going to like us, so let’s stop trying to curry favor with them.”
You can watch Perry’s speech here:
Maybe Governor Rick Perry should get into the race and turn the conversation towards job creation. However, I would not vote for Rick Perry because of his stance on illegal immigration.