As we move into the third quarter of 2015, there continues to be a heated debate regarding the economy, and more specifically the job market. Has there has been a recovery? Have things flat-lined? Have they actually taken a turn for the worse?
Perhaps the answers to those questions are entirely a matter of personal perspective, depending upon individual/family circumstances, location, industry, wealth management (or lack thereof), and personal drive to succeed. Every community will have stories of personal success and wealth, as well as those of personal struggle and poverty. There are people of wealth who struggle to make ends meet every day; whereas, many people of poverty are wealthy beyond measure.
Still struggling with the current economy and the job outlook? Consider this.
The economy weaves through ebbs and flows, bounces up and down, slides from bull markets to bear markets and back up again, and swings from optimism to sheer panic. Many base their opinion on the state of the economy solely by following what the Stock Market is doing on a daily basis and panic when the Stock Market takes a dive.
Case in point.
The Great Depression hit the United States like a freight train. However, after the crash and emerging through the dust and debris, great wealth was created. In fact, more millionaires were created during the great depression than in any other time in the history of the United States (History.com) Millionaires like John Steinbeck , author of East of Eden, Of Mice and Men and the Grapes of Wrath; Colonel Sanders, the founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken; as well as Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard, the founders of Hewlett-Packard. So to say that the economy and/or the job market are either booming or crashing may be entirely a matter of perspective, drive, vision, desire and pure determination.
It is most often during the worst financial times in our lives that we find our purpose, our passion, our drive to succeed. It is during these times that our communities become stronger as we pull together to lend whatever help we can to our neighbors, family and friends.
What does this have to do with the Pittsburgh job outlook you ask?
Well, according to pittsburghtoday.org and the Bureau of Labor Statistics seasonally adjusted rates, the current unemployment rate nationally stands at 5.5 % while the unemployment rate in Pittsburgh stands at 4.6, and for the State of Pennsylvania the unemployment rate is currently 5.3%. Unemployment rates by county are as follows: Fayette County has the highest unemployment rate at 8.0%, Armstrong County is 7.0%, Beaver County is 6.4%, Washington County is 5.8%, Westmoreland County is 5.6%, Lawrence County is 5.5%, Allegheny County is 5.1% and Butler County is 5.0%. It is often argued that the numbers released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics are inaccurate at best, so, for the sake of argument let’s compare the unemployment rate during the Great Depression to those of History.com, a recent GALLUP poll, and a recent Breitbart report.
According to History.com, during the height of the Great Depression there were between 11 and 15 million Americans out of work which amounts to approximately 24.9% of the total workforce. Today, according to GALLUP, an estimated 30 million Americans are currently out of work. Breitbart, however, claims the unemployment numbers are much higher coming in at 62.9%; approximately 92,898,000 unemployed Americans. Anyone that has ever taken a statistics course can tell you that stats can be skewed and doctored to favor one side of an argument over another. But, to the average American, those numbers can be quite frightening.
Again, what does this have to do with the job outlook for the Pittsburgh area and surrounding communities you ask?
Again, that answer all depends on your unique perspective. It depends on whether you choose to see that every cloud has a silver lining. It depends on whether or not you choose to see opportunity. It depends on whether or not you use your creativity, resourcefulness, and ability to take adversity and turn it into prosperity.
Your financial success doesn’t have to be based on how the overall economy is, nor should it be based on what the unemployment numbers are. Every individual is ultimately responsible for their own success or failure.
Happy career hunting!
Bureau of Labor Statistics.