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Manufacturing, Jobs and States “In Play”
Posted By Barry Ritholtz On March 4, 2004 @ 10:32 am In Finance,Politics | Comments Disabled
The print edition of today’s NYTimes (we referred to the online version yesterday ) contains an interesting chart:
click for larger chart
Source: NYT 
Now here’s where things get interesting: We previously discussed the states considered to be “In Play ” by Zogby International .Not coincidentally, many of these swing, key electoral college states are in the industrial heartland, which has borne the brunt of the recession and job losses over the past 3 years.
As of late, there has been an expansion of manufacturing activity, according to the Federal Reserve Beige Book . Employment has also been growing, albeit anemically. In at least 6 of the key states — Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, Tennessee, West Virginia and Wisconsin — there’s a mixed economic picture:
“Factories hummed and consumers kept cash registers busy in the first two months of this year, fresh evidence that the economic recovery is moving ahead, according to a Federal Reserve report released Wednesday.
“Economic activity continued to expand in January and February,” the Fed said in its latest survey of business conditions around the country. However, on the jobs front, “employment has been growing slowly in most Federal Reserve districts,” the report said.
So from the economic perspective, we continue to see the benefits from the massive stimulus combo of ultra-low interest rates, falling U.S. currency, increased money supplies, tax cuts and deficit spending.
Whether this stimulus nudges the economy into a self sustaining expansion is still unknown.
From a political perspective, the jobs creation issue remains crucial, according to a recent study  by the Pew Research Center. It is fraught with peril for both George Bush and his challenger John Kerry. However, the President’s opponent may not be Kerry, as much as it is time. The White House is, in effect, racing the clock: He needs sufficient job generation before the November to blunt the “jobs” issue in swing states. Like his father before him, Bush is at risk for the economy appearing to improve too late to save his own job.
Chief Executives Expect to Increase Hiring, Survey Says 
By DAVID LEONHARDT
N.Y. Times, March 3, 2004
Three-in-Ten Voters Open to Persuasion 
Swing Voters Criticize Bush on Economy, Support Him on Iraq
Released: March 3, 2004
Fed Says Economy Expanded in January and February 
March 3, 2004
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Article printed from The Big Picture: http://www.ritholtz.com/blog
URL to article: http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2004/03/manufacturing-jobs-and-states-in-play/
URLs in this post:
 referred to the online version yesterday: http://bigpicture.typepad.com/comments/2004/03/ceos_say_theyll.html
 Image: http://bigpicture.typepad.com/comments/mfr_gains_04econ.chart.html
 NYT: http://www.nytimes.com/imagepages/2004/03/03/business/04ECON.chart.jpg.html
 In Play: http://bigpicture.typepad.com/comments/2004/03/projected_elect.html
 Zogby International: http://www.zogby.com/
 Federal Reserve Beige Book: http://www.federalreserve.gov/fomc/beigebook/2004/20040303/default.htm
 recent study: http://people-press.org/reports/display.php3?ReportID=205
 Chief Executives Expect to Increase Hiring, Survey Says: http://www.nytimes.com/2004/03/04/business/04econ.html?ex=1393822800&en=633978a8f844f70f&ei=5007&partner=USERLAND
 Three-in-Ten Voters Open to Persuasion : http://people-press.org/reports/display.php3?ReportID=205
 Fed Says Economy Expanded in January and February: http://www.nytimes.com/2004/03/03/business/03WIRE-BEIGE.html
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