Slow Goes the State's Economic Recovery

"It will take well over two years for the [state] economy to fully rebound," declares An Economic Report to the Governor of the State of Tennessee 2010, issued by the Center for Business & Economic Research at the University of Tennessee in January. A few of the report's calculations and prognostications regarding our state:

• For 2009, state employment was down 4 percent; more than 150,000 jobs have been lost statewide since the recession's start.

• Taxable sales were down 2.2 percent in 2008 and will likely fall a further 7.6 percent in 2009.

• The state unemployment rate will likely average 10.4 percent this year and remain stuck above 10 percent through 2011, translating to more than 300,000 unemployed people in Tennessee in 2010 and 2011.

• A slower rate of non-farm job loss, along with the expectation of a rising average wage, should produce 2.5 percent growth in wage and salary income in 2010.