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Columbus region adds jobs as state, U.S. lose

Walker Evans Walker Evans
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The Dispatch wrote Region adds jobs as state, U.S. lose 

Saturday, August 2, 2008

BY DAN GEARINO

National employment statistics released yesterday provide fresh evidence of a deepening downturn. So far, however, central Ohio has avoided the brunt of a storm that has engulfed much of the state and country. The eight-county area has gained 4,000 jobs in 2008, during which time the nation has lost nearly a half-million jobs.

The question for economists and local leaders is how long can that continue?

New numbers yesterday showed the country’s unemployment rate climbed to a four-year high of 5.7 percent in July. The economy shed 51,000 nonfarm jobs during the month, bringing the year-to-date total loss to 463,000 jobs.

“I wouldn’t say Columbus is totally immune to some of the downturns in our economy related to energy costs and the housing crisis,” said Keith Ewald, chief of the Ohio Bureau of Labor Market Information. But, he added, “Certainly, to this point, and historically, Columbus fares better than the state as a whole.”

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