Job Creation Bills to be on Washington’s Agenda in 2010

December 21, 2009. An article by James Parrott, FPI’s deputy director and chief economist, who writes regularly for Gotham Gazette’s Economy section. Article >>

New York City in the Great Recession: Divergent Fates by Neighborhood and Race and Ethnicity

December 21, 2009. Current unemployment rates at a neighborhood level for New York City, and estimates of the unemployment rate by race/ethnicity and gender: the numbers show huge variations from neighborhood to neighborhood and also within neighborhoods. For example, while the overall unemployment rate in New York City was 10.1 percent in the third quarter of 2009, unemployment was 5.1 percent on Manhattan’s Upper East and West Sides in the third quarter, compared to 15.7 percent in the South and Central Bronx and 19.2 percent in Brooklyn’s East New York neighborhood.

Full report >>

Press release >> (also in HTML below)

Map – Wall Street Journal

Map – New York Times

For immediate release: Thursday, December 21, 2009

Unemployment rates diverge widely across NYC: First ever estimates by neighborhood and race/ethnicity

New York–Huge variations underlie the unemployment situation in New York City, according to a new study by the Fiscal Policy Institute (FPI). The institute estimates that unemployment was 5.1 percent on Manhattan’s Upper East and West Sides in the third quarter, compared to 15.7 percent in the South and Central Bronx and 19.2 percent in Brooklyn’s East New York neighborhood. The overall unemployment rate in New York City was 10.1 percent in the third quarter of 2009.

The FPI report is the first to provide relatively current unemployment rates at a neighborhood level for New York City, as well as the first to provide such estimates on the basis of race/ethnicity and gender.

“Wall Street might be recovering, but the recession rages on in New York City’s Main Street neighborhoods,” said James Parrott, FPI’s Deputy Director and Chief Economist. “In some cases, great disparities exist within neighborhoods. For example, in the West Brooklyn neighborhood stretching from Brooklyn Heights to Red Hook and Park Slope, white male unemployment was 3 percent, while in the same neighborhood, 46 percent of black men were jobless.”

Parrott also noted that the reported decline in New York City’s unemployment rate in November to 10.0 percent (seasonally adjusted) from 10.3 percent in October did not signal an improvement in the local job market. A closer look at the data shows that this decline was entirely due to people leaving the labor force, rather than an increase in the number of jobs.

The FPI report found that the citywide unemployment rate in the third quarter was 15.7 percent for blacks, 11.8 percent for Hispanics, 7.3 percent for white non-Hispanics, and 6.1 percent for the Asian and other category. Unemployment was higher for men (11.0 percent) than for women (9.1 percent).

The highest rates of unemployment were for blacks, particularly black men. In ten of the 24 neighborhoods identified in the report, black non-Hispanic unemployment was over 15 percent – one and a half times greater than the city’s overall unemployment rate. For black men, the official city-wide unemployment rate for the third quarter was 19.9 percent.

The report also showed a pronounced inverse relationship between neighborhood income and unemployment. The lowest income neighborhoods – those with median incomes from $20,000 to $30,000 – had the highest average unemployment rate of 15.3 percent. At the other end of the spectrum, the highest income neighborhoods – those with median incomes of $80,000 to $100,000 – had an average unemployment rate of 6.9 percent.

The Fiscal Policy Institute is a nonpartisan research and education organization that focuses on tax, budget, and economic public policy issues that affect the quality of life and the economic well being of New York State residents.

Recovery Act Keeping Roughly 419,000 New Yorkers Out of Poverty

December 17, 2009. New estimates released today by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) are based on seven provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) that directly affect individuals: three tax credits for working families, two unemployment insurance expansions, an increase in food stamps, and a one-time payment for retirees, veterans, and people with disabilities. Not only is the Recovery Act is creating jobs, helping close state and local budget gaps, and boosting the broader economy, it is also softening the recession’s impact on poverty by directly lifting family incomes. Press release with link to study >>

New York’s Regional Economies: The Hudson Valley

December 13, 2009. Press release, report.

New York’s Regional Economies: Long Island

December 8, 2009. Press release, report.

Immigrants and the Economy

November 30, 2009. This new report shows the robust immigrant contribution to GDP in the country’s 25 largest metropolitan areas. In the 25 metro areas combined, immigrants account for 20 percent of economic output and 20 percent of the population. The same basic relationship holds true, with slight variation, for each of the 25 areas, from metro Pittsburgh, where immigrants represent 3 percent of population and 4 percent of GDP, to metro Miami, where immigrants make up 37 percent of the population and 38 percent of GDP. Immigrants and the Economy also looks at the wide range of occupations held by immigrants and other reasons immigrant economic contribution is so consistently strong, with a special focus on the five largest metro areas in the East.

Supplemental materials for each of the 25 metro areas are available upon request.

 

New report shows robust immigrant contribution to GDP in the country’s 25 largest metropolitan areas. In the 25 metro areas combined, immigrants account for 20 percent of economic output and 20 percent of the population. The same basic relationship holds true, with slight variation, for each of the 25 areas, from metro Pittsburgh, where immigrants represent 3 percent of population and 4 percent of GDP, to metro Miami, where immigrants make up 37 percent of the population and 38 percent of GDP. Immigrants and the Economy also looks at the wide range of occupations held by immigrants and other reasons immigrant economic contribution is so consistently strong, with a special focus on the five largest metro areas in the East.

A Tale of Two Recessions: The State of Working New York City, 2009

November 19, 2009. While Wall Street recovers, New York City’s Main Street economy remains mired in the “Great Recession.” This report from FPI is an examination of the impact of the country’s “Great Recession” on the New York City economy. The data show the shallowness of the previous expansion from 2003 to 2007 before the onset of the Great Recession, and recession-related job losses and rising economic insecurities. The report also explores in detail the character and extent of unemployment in New York City – and finds that despite Wall Street’s faster-than-expected recovery, the city’s Main Street economy continues to struggle with high unemployment and widespread economic insecurity.

As Wall Street recovers, recession continues to grip the rest of New York City: New report reveals mounting economic distress

With no respite in sight for New York’s Main Street economy, a tale of two distinct recessions is emerging for the city. That’s the message of a new report released today by the Fiscal Policy Institute, a nonpartisan think tank that focuses on tax, budget, and economic issues.

“With each passing day, the disconnect grows. Wall Street is recovering, but in the boroughs and neighborhoods, unemployment has doubled in the past year,” said James Parrott, deputy executive director and chief economist at the institute.

According to the report, more than 400,000 New York City residents are currently out of work – and fully 40 percent of them have been without a job for more than six months. Moreover, the unemployment rate, 10.3 percent in September, is likely to stay in double digits for many more months.

The so-called Great Recession hit New York City in August 2008, later than the country as a whole, for which the recession began in December 2007. Since then, according to the report, the local economy has suffered in a number of ways:

  • Unemployment has more than doubled over the past year – the sharpest rise in the 34-year history of monthly unemployment data.
  • Two thirds of the job loss in the six months following the September 2008 financial meltdown were outside the finance sector.
  • Median wages have fallen by five percent in this decade and by 11 percent since 1990.
  • New York City consumer spending dropped by 11 percent over the past year.
  • Fifty thousand New York City homeowners have lost their homes through mortgage foreclosures over the past two and a half years.
  • Personal and business bankruptcies are skyrocketing.

Parrott credits the financial bailout with softening the blow to Wall Street, but said it was not a cure-all. “New York City’s job decline is only half that of the nation’s, but the unemployment crisis is every bit as severe here as it is nationwide,” he said.

The official unemployment rate masks deeper troubles in the city’s labor market:

  • A greater share of New York’s unemployed have been without work for more than six months.
  • There are large numbers of long-term unemployed, underemployed and discouraged workers – the city’s real unemployment rate is 16 percent.
  • Growing numbers of people are entering or re-entering the labor market spurred by economic hardship.
  • Young workers face 25 to 40 percent unemployment rates.

“This recession underscores the disparities that characterize our city, with unemployment rates and economic well-being clearly diverging along lines of race and ethnicity,” said Parrott, citing the “real unemployment rate” (which factors in under-employed and discouraged workers) of over 20 percent for blacks and Hispanics who make up half of the city’s workforce.

Restoring the city’s economy to health requires additional federal stimulus and job creation funding and state action to increase New York’s low unemployment benefit. But Parrott believes that the city government has a role, too: “We need skillful management of the city budget to protect vital services while ensuring that the millions we spend on economic development actually result in good jobs, and not more poverty-wage jobs.”

The Fiscal Policy Institute (FPI) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan education and research organization that focuses on the tax, budget, and economic issues that affect the quality of life and well-being of New York State and New York City residents.

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Who Pays? Distributional Analysis of the Tax Systems in All 50 States

November 18, 2009. A new study from the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP), co-released by FPI, shows that middle-income families in New York pay a higher share of their income in state and local taxes (12.0 percent) than do the state’s richest families (who pay only 9.4 percent of their income in state and local taxes). Data for New York, full report, 50 states.

A Better Choice for Addressing New York State’s Projected Budget Gaps

November 5, 2009. A five-pager by FPI’s Frank Mauro and Ron Deutsch of New Yorkers for Fiscal Fairness. Three points: 1. First, do no harm! 2. Understand the role of federal aid and state reserves during economic downturns 3. Make better budget choices for 2010‐2011.

This brief was distributed at a press conference at which FPI, New Yorkers for Fiscal Fairness, and a diverse group of statewide organizations joined forces to publicize the harmful impact of many of the governor’s proposed cuts. Group press release >>

Advocates Decry Mid-Year Budget Cuts in Governor’s Deficit Reduction Plan

November 5, 2009. FPI, New Yorkers for Fiscal Fairness, and a diverse group of statewide organizations joined forces to publicize the harmful impact of many of the governor’s proposed cuts, and to urge the Legislature to look at less painful alternatives. Group press release >>

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