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Monday, June 27, 2011

"No one could have predicted" - State budget cuts would cost jobs

Republicans stand by their credo that cutting public spending will lead to an increase in private sector job growth as well as overall economic growth. A recent Harvard University study of 107 economies where government spending was cut during recessionary times resulted in further economic decline in all but 3 of the economies. The three economies that didn't decline all saw significant easing of the money supply by the central bank.

This hasn't stopped Republicans at both the Federal and state level from insisting that the 'cut and grow' policy is the only way to stimulate private sector growth.

Logic would predicate that they are wrong. Government cuts inevitably involve reductions on government employment as well as in spending. People who have lost their jobs tend to spend less. That's so fucking obvious is doesn't even warrant explaining but with GOP economics even the glaringly obvious has to be explained.

A new study confirms the obvious. States that have cut more tend to have employment rates in both the public and private sector that have performed worse than average while states that haven't cut spending performed above the national average.

Relative to national economic trends, states that increased spending enjoyed on average:

0.2 percentage point decrease in the unemployment rate

1.4 percent increase in private employment

0.5 percent real economic growth since the start of the recession

In contrast, states that cut spending saw on average

1 percentage point increase in the unemployment rate

2.1 percent loss of private employment

2.9 percent real economic contraction relative to the national economic trend

Steep state spending cuts have gone hand-in-hand with rising unemployment rates, falling private-sector payroll employment, and lower growth in state’s gross domestic product, or GDP.

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