Economic Lookout: In Rochester, recovery remains elusive

MinnEcon note: Teri Gibbons is a Rochester nurse and a MinnEcon economic lookout, sharing stories about the economy around her. In April, she gave us a thumbnail look at Rochester and shared frustrations about the housing market.

In her latest dispatch, she shows us why she’s unconvinced that a recovery is underway.

Interested in being an Economic Lookout? Drop us a line.

Economic Lookout Gibbons | Rochester

I’ve written before about real estate and the job situation so I thought an update of how things have changed in Rochester over the past six months or so

was in order.

House sales are down almost fifty percent. Considering that sales were already stagnating when I first wrote it is a sad commentary about how our economy is allegedly improving.

Three out of every five houses in my neighborhood are for sale and I see that all around town.

Some houses are priced so low you would think they’d go fast but the loans just aren’t out there due to people not having the higher down payments needed or because their credit rating was destroyed the past two years so rebuilding is like scaling a rocky crevice.

The Workforce Center has an increase in persons with degrees — usually middle age now in that void between getting their kids through college and retiring financially secure — that are finding themselves overqualified for many jobs or unemployed in their field for so long that they are no longer marketable.

The majority of jobs listed in the classifieds are for newspaper delivery or long haul drivers.

Nurses living in the area are finding limited jobs but if they go to a website or two headhunters are wooing nurses from all over the US to work, in of all places, the facility they are being told there are no openings at.

Engineers are being laid off but then “consultants” from around the US and other areas of the globe are being brought in to do the job without benefits.

There needs to be another school levy if we are to be able to afford teachers and books but people are feeling tapped out so it is our children that suffer.

Unemployment extensions have almost doubled for this area. Media may project this image of billowing economic success but it is my opinion it is nothing more than an illusion.

Teri Gibbons is a registered nurse in Rochester. She says she’s always looking at what’s going on around her, trying to be impartial.

Statewide and Southeast Minnesota unemployment rates during the recession (click for a larger view).




Want to be an Economic Lookout? Drop us a line.

Comments are closed.