Ocean State not as bad off as employment data suggest

'Happy days are not here again, but we are not ready to fall off a cliff.'

When University of Rhode Island economist Leonard Lardaro began working as a forecaster for the New England Economic Partnership in 1991, he realized the Ocean State was not getting the kind of detailed economic analysis happening elsewhere. Seeing an opportunity to fill that gap, Lardaro developed his Current Conditions Index for Rhode Island that 11 years later is relied on to provide a barometer of the state’s economic health. More

To continue reading this article, please do one of the following.



NEWSMAKERS

Ocean State not as bad off as employment data suggest

'Happy days are not here again, but we are not ready to fall off a cliff.'

COURTESTY LEONARD LARDARO STAYING ABOVE WATER: Leonard Lardaro, a URI economist, says that Rhode Island is not on the verge of a double-dip recession, despite what the official data says.
Posted 6/11/12

When University of Rhode Island economist Leonard Lardaro began working as a forecaster for the New England Economic Partnership in 1991, he realized the Ocean State was not getting the kind of detailed economic analysis happening elsewhere. Seeing an opportunity to fill that gap, Lardaro developed his Current Conditions Index for Rhode Island that 11 years later is relied on to provide a barometer of the state’s economic health.

As the state has struggled to recover from the recession, people have looked to the index to find out how bad it really is here and whether the state has hit a feared double dip. February employment figures placed Rhode Island teetering on the brink of another downturn, but Lardaro held off on calling it a double dip and later learned the labor numbers may have been distorted.

Lardaro discusses why unemployment figures in Rhode Island have gone out of whack and where the state really stands.

PBN: You’ve said this is not only a difficult time for Rhode Island economically but an unusually difficult time to figure out exactly what is happening economically in the state. What is causing the confusion?

LARDARO: Right now the labor-market data that has been released by R.I. Department of Labor and Training has been inaccurate – they even admitted this during the revenue estimating and caseload conference. Right now if you look at the released data, Rhode Island has had declines in payroll employment for about eight of the last nine months and just about every labor-market indicator except for the manufacturing ones are abysmal. … After my March report, I was notified by DLT that when they have incorporated the most recent tax data, Rhode Island hasn’t had that many declines and employment has really been going up.

PBN: Data revisions are normal, but they are also changing, right?

Next Page
No comments on this story | Add your comment
Please log in or register to add your comment
Calendar
PBN Hosted
Events

Only a few seats remain for PBN's Manufacturing Awards Dinner and Ceremony, Thursday, April 24th, at the Bryant University Bello Center. Don't hesitate. Register today!
  • Business Women
    Accomplished. Confident. Wicked Smart. Nominate women you know who deserve speci ...
  • 40 Under Forty
    It's the 10th Anniversary of 40 Under Forty, and PBN is planning a special event ...
  • Healthiest Employers
    Enrollment now open for the 2014 Healthiest Employers Program. Please take a mom ...
Advertisement
Purchase Data
Book of Lists
Lists
Book of Lists cover
PBN's annual Book of Lists has been an essential resource for the local business community for almost 30 years. The Book of Lists features a wealth of company rankings from a variety of fields and industries, including banking, health care, real estate, law, hospitality, education, not-for-profits, technology and many more.
Data icons
Data can be purchased as single lists, in either Excel or PDF format; the entire database of the published book, in Excel format; or a printed copy of the Book of Lists.
  • Purchase an e-File of a single list
  •  
  • Purchase an e-File of the entire Book of Lists database
  •  
  • Purchase a printed copy of the Book of Lists
  •  
    National
    Local
    Latest News