U-M economists forecast job growth for southeast Michigan

Posted on February 22, 2013

Flint — University of Michigan economists are predicting job growth for the region including Genesee, Lapeer, Livingston, Macomb, Oakland, St. Clair and Shiawassee counties.

George Fulton and Don Grimes of the Ann Arbor school’s Institute for Research on Labor, Employment said the areas will gain more than 76,000 jobs this year through 2015. They issued the annual forecast Thursday for the seven-county Economic Growth Alliance.

They say the region will add 17,600 jobs this year, 27,200 jobs in 2014 and 31,600 jobs in 2015. That comes after a gain of nearly 75,000 jobs during the past three years.

Fulton and Grimes say that the job growth will be accompanied by slowly declining unemployment and relatively tame inflation.

“The region is starting its fourth year of economic recovery after nearly a decade-long recession,” Fulton, director of the institute’s Center for Market Labor Research, said in a statement. “Although the pace of job growth has slowed recently, we see a sustained, moderately paced recovery through 2015, extending the recovery period to six years.”

The unemployment rate in the region, which has improved each year since 2009, will continue to drop from last year’s 9.4 percent clip to 9.1 percent this year, 8.3 percent next year and 7.3 percent in 2015. Inflation will hover around 2 percent or less.

Detroit News Staff and Writers, The Detroit News.