Noticing an economic improvement?

Up until now, the economic numbers have been dismal.

AJC staffer Dan Chapman reports that Georgia unemployment has gone from 4.6 percent when the Great Recession started in December 2007 to 9.9 percent now.

Metro Atlanta foreclosures have skyrocketed and home prices have plummeted.

But, economists say, things are beginning to turn around, although very slowly.

Two questions for you:

Are you noticing a change overall?

Is your specific situation changing?

44 comments Add your comment

shadow7071

December 9th, 2010
7:45 am

We hear talk of a turn around and sometimes we hear talk of a double dip recession. Last week we saw national unemployment rise from 9.6 to 9.8 percent. And total underemployed was reported to be 17 percent. So, if we are seeing a turn around it is anemic and that’s a problem. With the economy in this weakened state sudden and unexpected forces and events can abruptly change the direction of the economy. Case in point, over the past week or so we’ve seen gas prices abruptly and significantly rise. Since gas price impacts everything we touch we now have to see how this effects the economy and the turn around. I suspect that we’re heading toward that double dip (if gas prices continue to rise).

TnGelding

December 9th, 2010
8:05 am

shadow7071

December 9th, 2010
7:45 am

Surely Obama won’t sit on his hands the way Bush did and watch it happen. That $4 a gallon gas contributed to the housing collapse, although certainly not as much as the crooks and opportunists. Not to mention the mortgage backed securities that were sold worldwide. We’ve simply got to change the way oil is gotten to market. The speculators have us by the throat.

TnGelding

December 9th, 2010
8:10 am

I’ve been out playing Santa the last few days and it looks bleak, but I understand e-commerce is up significantly. We’re retired and well anchored, and are doing more than ever to help those in dire straits. But it’s difficult to help those that continue their wasteful ways.

Charles

December 9th, 2010
9:16 am

Charles

December 9th, 2010
9:17 am

No on the second question too.

Don

December 9th, 2010
11:42 am

Nothing much changed for us..Wife out of work since April of ‘09….maybe 5 interviews….potential employers quit looking at long term unemployed she tries everyday…keeps sending applications/resumes…never gets anything back…..

TJ

December 9th, 2010
11:52 am

Radly Dawg

December 9th, 2010
11:59 am

How could it be over…when the &*%$! White House and village idiots in Congress keep styming business with over taxation and regulation????? We’re screwed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

rebelson

December 9th, 2010
12:00 pm

In September we had a scale back at the plant i worked at….they got a lot of production workers and 3 maint. guys…one guy was 57..another 58…and i am 60…notice anything here?….lol…and they didnt get us because of work performance…i was NEVER late or NEVER laided out of work…i worked for anybody that needed to be off …i worked overtime anytime they wanted me to…no…they laid us off because we are insurance liabilities…since i have been out of work i have applied other places…i have a very strong resume but to this day i have had no offers….i am very healthy according to my doctor…so..no….there is no turn around for me snd i doubt that there is for anyone that is in my age bracket…what gives me comfort is knowing that they to will reach this age one day…

Ross

December 9th, 2010
12:06 pm

As the above writer stated, age discrimination is rampant for those over 50. Haven’t worked since 2/09 and I have 25 yrs IT experience and 2 degrees from Tech. Forget working if you are 50+. No one in the media will cover this story. Of course, they won’t cover H1b fraud either, so..

Joe

December 9th, 2010
12:24 pm

Read an article in our local paper touting a big commericial development and all the jobs it will create here on the south side. When you peel back the onion and look at the estimates provided regarding the jobs and wages, the people will be paid they claim when completed they will be adding 1,000 jobs at or below the poverty line. So when the jobs numbers come out and the level of unemployment decreases think of these 1,000 souls scrambling for these positions who will have a job and still not be able to feed their families without public assistiance.Good times.

Trypout

December 9th, 2010
12:32 pm

1. A very small change
2. Yes but very small as well.

itsme

December 9th, 2010
12:40 pm

Situation unchanged. Still no job. Still looking. Agree with Ross: those older than 50 need not apply, regardless of education or experience.

Economics

December 9th, 2010
12:46 pm

It will only get worse, not better. New way of life for Americans, not what our parents had. Housing will continue to drop over the next 3 yrs, then bounce along a bottom for 3 yrs. There will be a segment of the population that remains unemployed, jobs are not coming back. The few jobs that are going to be created, 25-35k, new lower-middle class life style for many. We closed over 45,000 factorys in this country in the past decade, we just dont produce anything any more. Our debt has come back to haunt us, and if California falls it’s game over. The Fed and Government and Wall St., have sold us out. Time to take a stand, whatever the means. Locked n loaded.

Dan Deman

December 9th, 2010
12:47 pm

At 44 years old, I lost my 6 figure IT job in ‘07. Started a Construction company which bust in 09. Worked all of 09 & 10 in various positions, none of which paid more than $20/hr. Now I have a contract position paying $40/hr. It’s not the $125/hr I was accustomed to, but it’s moving in the right direction. An economist would say my pay has increased %100 in just the last year, so the economy must be getting better! Overall, it’s bad. But we’re numb to it.

terry

December 9th, 2010
12:50 pm

ROTFLMAO!!!! You can’t make this stuff up.

“The recession officially ended in June of 2009″

What planet is either this politician, bureaucrat or left wing economist living on?
If if wasn’t so serious that would be the overestimate of the year or at least the best punch line.

Harold

December 9th, 2010
12:54 pm

Let’s see: An employer in the Atlanta area is looking for an experienced HTML/CSS coder, with database programming skills, willing to juggle multiple projects at once, and have a college degree = $12/hour. The hell with that, I’ll flip burger at BK and get free lunch and dinner. This country is going down the drain very quickly. Employers know it and employees feel it. Really, what is the point of even trying anymore?

jl

December 9th, 2010
1:11 pm

Maybe the politician’s recession is over, but the aftermath they left is still out here. Never seen so many people hurting in all of my 71 years. I think God has a special place in hell for those idiots in Washington, for what is going on in our Country.

Still the best place in the world to live, but they (politician’s) are working overtime to screw it up for all of us.

Dixie

December 9th, 2010
1:19 pm

“But, economists say, things are beginning to turn around, although very slowly.”

What a crock full of CRAP ! ! !

CE

December 9th, 2010
1:19 pm

No, nothing has changed for me. Still own a house with equity, no car payment, and no credit card debt.

Ben

December 9th, 2010
1:22 pm

Yeah, I’m sure an economist can explain how things ended technically but it means less than zero in the real world.

I work for a local food bank and can tell you that things are more dire than ever. To use a political term, things simply aren’t “trickling down” to those working families. When the 2010 census comes out, we fully expect the poverty rate to be somewhere around 10% which is a nightmarish level.

It’s not just the homeless, it’s working poor families that just can’t make ends meet on hourly wages that the state of Georgia continues to REFUSE to raise despite 45 other states raising theirs to the federal rate.

Not to mention hiring has once again stalled. I agree there have been small signs of light but things are a LONG way from better.

NoChangeHere

December 9th, 2010
1:39 pm

Still unemployed after two years (and yes, I’ve even applied for retail and holiday work), and had to sell my house. But, I have gone on more interviews in the last 6 months, but no cigar.

Masked Avenger

December 9th, 2010
1:44 pm

I’m a schoolteacher. It’s about to go from bad to worse when things were starting to look up.

Howard

December 9th, 2010
1:45 pm

It is clear that the recession is far from over. Until the job market improves significantly don’t expect things to get much better anytime soon. While it may be a bit of a chicken and egg question, don’t expect retail sales, for instance, to climb much without employment gains. And, don’t expect employment to increase much in the housing industry. The recovery will be very uneven and unless there is some unforeseen advance in science or technology, don’t expect it to be a boom recovery.

Self-Employed

December 9th, 2010
1:46 pm

It really burns me to hear that the recession officially ended in mid-2009. Only in political circles.

Nobody ever mentions that the unemployment rates don’t include those who are self-employed. Self-employed individuals aren’t eligible for unemployment checks, so they’re left out of the equation. How many self-employed people have been unable to keep a roof over their head in this recession? Millions.

Think of the different people who have seen a dramatic decrease in their business: painters, contractors, landscapers, Realtors, hair dressers, nail salons, etc. Not to mention the small-business owners who can’t claim unemployment checks: neighborhood dry cleaners, restaurant owners, etc.

There is a shadow working poor that is not even counted — those who work for themselves and have no “safety net” like an employee does. They use their savings and scrounge up jobs however and whenever they can. And they can only hang on so long……

True American

December 9th, 2010
1:58 pm

Look the reality is that people who do not have a job are lazy and just want that easy UI check and food stamps. Take ANY job!!! Work retail, fast foods, babysit, eldersit, clean houses, be a Handy Andy.

Lazy Bones who claim to be too old and over-qualified and who receive UI and food stamps should have to do public works and submit to drug and alcohol testing to continue to be on the dole.

Be American and quit whining and pull yourselves up by your bootsraps.

Sara Palin and the Republicans are Godly and will help our nation be great again. Palin 2012!!!!!!!

Wanda

December 9th, 2010
2:06 pm

When is my house payment gonna go down to what my house is worth now? Should be about $500 permonth instead of $1200.00 per month.

Praying for help

December 9th, 2010
2:11 pm

Very small. My husband is back to work after nine months. We a way behind on our bills from living off one income and no one can help us because I make too much or we are behind on the bills but if we pay it up to current they could help us. (If I could do that I wouldn’t need your help!!! duh!!)

Prez Obozo

December 9th, 2010
2:12 pm

Answers to questions, NO & NO! America WILL fail!! As politicians wastes money on ear marks to get their under the table kick-backs & teachers lose their jobs, classes sizes will grow & the quality of education will decrease. A time will come where graduation standards will be lowered & business’es will simply look to China & India for well educated, high achieving workers who will be imported here to fill jobs! As I stated the United States WILL falter – there is no stopping because most of America does not have the stomach to get the politicians attention. That would take some serious uprising in this country to wake them up! (1) LOBBYING needs to be ELIMINATED to put a stop to the corrupt politicians using their positions to laundry money into their accounts. (2) Age discrimination laws need to be enforced. (3) Wall street thugs need to go to prison & not be given huge bonuses. We are done my friends – see you in the next life!

Don Nelson

December 9th, 2010
2:54 pm

3 years ago I started my own packaging distribution business after working for others for almost 30 years. Was the best thing I could have done, also the hardest, as the economy has not been friendly. Every day is a street fight, but having your own business makes our small successes even more gratifying, especially in todays economy. Trust me, it is hard, makes you find out who you really are. Did this at 61, so it can be done.

Andy in Blairsville

December 9th, 2010
3:09 pm

My manufacturing business grew 30% in 2009 and 22% so far in 2010. I’ve hired 2 FT people since 1/09 and I hired 2 PT guys this year. The biggest reason behind this is my global competitors have maxed out their market share, while my market share is only a drop in the proverbial bucket. I happen to be in the right place at the right time with the right products, not to mention people are bragging about my products all over the internet on enthusiast message forums.

Obviously I’m the exception to the rule.

TnGelding

December 9th, 2010
3:40 pm

terry

December 9th, 2010
12:50 pm

Maybe you don’t know the definition of recession?

Self-Employed

December 9th, 2010
1:46 pm

Do the self-employed have the option to pay unemployment insurance?

The employment numbers are based on surveys:

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm

Household Survey Data

The number of unemployed persons was 15.1 million in November. The unemployment
rate edged up to 9.8 percent; it was 9.6 percent in each of the prior 3 months.

Establishment Survey Data

Total nonfarm payroll employment changed little in November (+39,000). Job gains
continued in temporary help services and in health care, while employment fell in
retail trade. Since December 2009, total payroll employment has increased by an
average of 86,000 per month.

Suffice to say the unemployed are still suffering from the effects of the recession. Meanwhile, Congress and the White House are still bickering and dickering over an issue whose outcome should have been signaled months ago.

No Deal

December 9th, 2010
4:58 pm

Government economists said the recession has been over for a long time! YES!!!!!

D. Thomas

December 9th, 2010
4:58 pm

There could be a dramatic turnaround if the Governor and his hand-picked DNR team chose to spend the capital outlay funds on jobs instead of one single land acquisition purchase. This is american greed at its finest. Ethically speaking it is no different than the judge impeached for taking money from lawyers, or the women (Pope) in the school system accused of sending jobs to her former husband. Capital Outlay includes the broad category of expenditures related to the acquisition, construction, development, extension, enlargement, or improvement of land, waters, property, highways, roads, buildings, structures, equipment, or facilities. Capital outlay includes renovation and rehabilitation to enhance and improve existing facilities and structures, and also includes extraordinary nonroutine actions for major corrective repairs or to extend expected service lives.

Deal Me In

December 9th, 2010
5:52 pm

the governor will making some sweet deals in the next year or two with his buddies—he’ll end up owing none of those millions—book it!

Ross

December 9th, 2010
6:17 pm

Harold, you will not get a burger flipping job at BK – those are all taken.

The Dogfighter Returns

December 9th, 2010
6:45 pm

“The recession officially ended in June of 2009″
——

The above statement doesn’t mean the pain is over.

It just means GDP for 2 quarters has not been negative. boo freaking hoo. :)

It is simply a meanigless statistic to the Amish, for those of you heavily invested in wall street it’s important.

Jim

December 9th, 2010
10:47 pm

I’ve been underemployed since I graduated grad school in IT in 2002. For me, the “recession” has actually been going on since 2000! It was the reason I went back to school, which only made things worse, because I have more debt, but don’t have the “experience” in the profession that matches my education, so I can’t pay for it. Meanwhile, most of America simply borrowed to keep out of recssion for most of that time period keeping thier heads in the sand. It isn’t a recession – its a depression!

Self-Employed

December 10th, 2010
12:03 am

TnGelding – No, the self-employed can’t pay into unemployment insurance. We are not eligible for this benefit. We must scrape by as best we can and when we finally give up, we aren’t on anyone’s “list” of unemployed people.

Ended up being at a Big Box store this afternoon and overheard two contractors talking. (Again, contractors would be self-employed.) One man asked the other how business was and he answered that he’s making ends meet. The first man said, “I’ve never been so close to going under in my 30 years in this business. I can’t hang on much longer.

I believe that he speaks for a good many of us who are self-employed — hanging on by a thread and using up any and all savings and retirement funds that we’ve tucked away, all in the hopes that the economy will turn around “soon.” To hear that the recession ended in June of ‘09 is a joke.

Bob Walters

December 10th, 2010
2:10 am

Yes, things have been looking better for quite a while. The stock market is doing great and returns on international investments are fantastic. Over the past couple days a Chinese IPO TRIPLED in value! These are great times for hard working people that saved their money. These are lousy times for drunks, drug addicts, and lazy whiners that say they can’t find a job. All I can say to them is you don’t know what bad is. When the Tea Party sets this country on the right path, you will be begging for that HTML/CSS coder job… at $3.00/hour! The end of the dole is on its way… no more unemployment, no more welfare, and finally take government out of legislating wages… end the minimum wage law. Tea Party in 2012 !

Anonymous

December 10th, 2010
9:07 am

retails improved a bit, but still no jobs

DeadZone

December 11th, 2010
10:30 am

the economy’s worse than ever–no jobs, no prospects. The “economic experts” in DC are a disgrace.

Open Minded

December 11th, 2010
7:15 pm

No change… banks don’t want to lend money to small business because sales are down… can’t blame them but TARP bailed them out when they were down. Regulation has increased and the fools in Washington still don’t get that they have stymied business with rules, regs and taxation….we need a Mitch Daniels or a Chris Christie to cut Gov’t and deal with out of control Gov’t unions and pensions, the extra weight we all carry has reached the point where we cannot carry it and succeed.

No jobs

December 12th, 2010
9:38 pm

I’m staying on unemployment as long as possible. I refuse to work for chump change at some menial job. Hopefully the economy improves in the next year.