Connecticut Lagged US in Job Creation in 2014

Connecticut fell below every other state in the nation in terms of job creation in 2014. North Dakota led the list. Clearly that could change this year as oil prices plunge.

According to researchers at Gallup:

North Dakota maintained its pre-eminent position in Gallup’s annual ranking of state job markets in 2014, with employed North Dakota residents providing a strongly upbeat report on hiring conditions where they work — the most positive of any state. Connecticut finds itself at the other end of the spectrum, as workers there reported the worst hiring climate, although still net positive.

An explanation:

In North Dakota, 48% of workers in 2014 said their employer is hiring and 12% said their employer is letting workers go, resulting in a +36 Job Creation Index score. By contrast, Connecticut’s +16 index score reflects 33% of workers saying their employer is hiring and 17% letting go.

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The states at the top of the list were primarily in the plains and mountain states, along with Texas. Texas posted a number of 31. Nebraska’s was 31, Iowa’s 30, Utah’s 30 and South Dakota’s 29. Looking back at the trend, Gallup researchers point out:

Beyond North Dakota, other states where workers are especially likely to report positive net hiring include Texas, Nebraska, Wisconsin, Iowa and South Dakota — all states that rely on either the energy sector or farming commodities, or both.

Layoffs in some of these states have already started.

At the same time, the states with the lowest rankings may not change soon, since they are mostly in one region and have posted poor job creation for several years:

Connecticut and Rhode Island tie for compiling the worst collective job creation scores since 2008 and are the only states to have ranked in the bottom 10 each year. New Jersey is not far behind, ranking among the lowest states for net hiring in all but one year.

Connecticut’s position at the bottom of the list in 2014 highlights that four of the six New England states had among the lowest Job Creation Index scores last year — the others being Maine, Vermont and Rhode Island. All four also ranked in the bottom 10 in 2013. New Hampshire has occasionally appeared in the bottom tier for job creation, leaving Massachusetts as the sole New England state that has avoided this unwelcome distinction.

Crude oil prices sit below $50 a barrel now, and some forecasters believe the number could fall to $20. If so, North Dakota could drop below Connecticut this year.

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Methodology: Results for this Gallup poll were based on telephone interviews conducted Jan. 2 to Dec. 30, 2014, on the Gallup U.S. Daily survey, with a random sample of 201,254 employed adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±1 percentage point at the 95% confidence level.

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