According to a front page article in the September 6th edition of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the nation’s unemployment rate reached 6.1 percent, a five-year high, up from 5.7 percent in July. “The magnitude of the job losses, 84,000 jobs, is not terrible, but it does continue a very weak pattern,” said Robert Dye, senior economist with PNC Financial Services Group.
He went on to report that job losses are ongoing, and impact more than just the manufacturing and construction sectors, which are often the first to be affected in any economic down turn. This time the losses are impacting the leisure and hospitality sectors as well.
Joel Naroff, president of Naroff Economic Advisors reports, “Businesses have decided to hunker down. They are not hiring, and they are paring workers where they can. That is making things pretty tough out there.”
Dye said the impact is not as severe in Pittsburgh as in other regions of the nation where the mortgage crisis is more severe. In addition, area manufacturing industries focus on the more stable export markets while the region’s medical services sector continues to be a growth industry.
Nevertheless, this is certainly a time when Pittsburgh job holders should carefully assess the stability of their present positions and consider developing contingency plans to address potential layoffs in their companies. In these economic times, the wisest course is to have a career insurance plan.