Economists: Arizona to regain all jobs lost in the pandemic in 2021

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Posted at 8:49 AM, May 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-14 15:28:35-04

PHOENIX — This year, Arizona is expected to add 116,900 new jobs, which will put the state ahead of where it was for total jobs before the Covid-19 pandemic, experts said at the annual economic forecast event held by the Economic Club of Phoenix, a unit of the W. P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University.

“Our current recession started in April 2020, we lost over 331,000 jobs,” Lee McPheters, research professor of economics at ASU and director of the school’s JPMorgan Chase Economic Outlook Center, said. “But we’ve already recovered over two-thirds of those.”

Before the 2020 recession, Arizona outpaced every state in terms of job creation, McPheters said. While middle- and high-paying jobs have recovered and actually grown since January 2020, before the pandemic, low-wage jobs, those earning below $27,000, have not. There was a 23.3% decrease in jobs earning $27,000 or less, creating a “K-shaped” recovery, which occurs when different parts of the economy recover at different rates.

The Valley has benefitted from the “cluster phenomenon” for semiconductor manufacturing, McPheters said, who pointed to Intel’s $20 billion expansion and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd.’s new Phoenix location.

“What is not on the charts there is all of the suppliers and all the employment they generate has profound impact on the economy as well,” McPheters said.

Read the full article at Phoenix Business Journal.