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Maryland and the Regional Economy in February 2017

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On Friday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released its preliminary February 2017 employment numbers for Maryland and other states in the Mid-Atlantic Region (Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Washington DC). Maryland’s unemployment rate remained at 4.2 percent, the same rate since August 2016. This is lower than the unemployment rate for the Mid-Atlantic Region which decreased slightly from 4.6 percent in January to 4.5 percent. In February, Maryland added 11,500 jobs, a gain of 0.4 percent. Although modest, Maryland’s employment grew more than any other state in the region. Maryland’s employment gains were primarily due to an increase of roughly 9,400 private sector jobs. RESI Chief Economist Daraius Irani, Ph.D., examines which industries grew and shrunk in Maryland over the past month and how Maryland compares to its neighbors.

RESI in the News

President Trump’s Economic Plan, WYPR, 03/27/2017

President Trump recently released a “skinny budget” outlining the goals of the new administration. Included in the proposal are a planned increase of $54 billion in military spending and large cuts to almost every other federal agency. In an interview on WYPR, RESI Chief Economist Dr. Daraius Irani noted that over five percent of Maryland’s workforce is directly employed by the Federal Government, and reductions in the workforce could have massive ripple effects in counties where large numbers of commuters live, such as Howard, Montgomery, and Prince George’s County.

Census shows population dwindling from Baltimore City, WBAL TV11, 03/23/2017

A recent report by the US Census estimated that Baltimore’s population fell by more than 6,700 people in 2016. The city’s population is estimated at 614,664, or roughly the same level as 100 years ago. According to RESI’s Chief Economist, Dr. Daraius Irani, city residents are leaving the city after considering two questions: “Am I going to be safe at night? and Are my kids going to be able to attend a financially viable school system or a school system that's going to be bankrupt?"

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