Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Skimpy Official WI Econ. Forecasts Under Walker Overly-Optimistic

[Updated from Saturday: Trend is about 28,000, not the projected 40,000.] The Wisconsin Department of Revenue is issuing fewer economic forecast reports and the last one - - from five+ months ago - - projects job growth in the state not seen since Walker's swearing-in.

Gee: wonder why?

First - - Check out the department's index of reports, and see how the frequency is declining.

Winter 2014

Past Reports

And "Winter 2014?" That report came out on March 20, according to this news release - - 
March 20Winter 2014 Wisconsin Economic Outlook and Winter 2014 Wisconsin Metropolitan Area Outlook
so is it titled "Winter 2014" because there were still 24 hours of winter left on the calendar when released, or because it's supposed to take you to the end of the calendar year and make you think, wow - - they're really looking far ahead. What confidence! 

Why doesn't the report have an actual date on it? 

Note also how often these reports were published during the Doyle years, and were issued routinely with more precise dates. 

There have only been two in the last two years. How come, and where here is Walker's vaunted "transparency"?

  • December 2010
  • August 2010
  • May 2010
  • February 2010
  • November 2009
  • June 2009
  • March 2009
  • December 2008
  • August 2008
  • May 2008
  • And speaking of data: take a look among all the forecasts in the Winter 2014 report at the very important jobs creation number - - since Walker is repeatedly claiming during the campaign that he's succeeded while challenger Mary Burke correctly says he's way behind his 250,000 new jobs promise:

    The forecast calls for increases of more than 40,000 jobs per year in 2014 and 2015.
    40,000 this year? 

    How broken is that crystal ball?

    The state so far this year isn't on pace to hit 30,000 - - and, OK , the year isn't over yet - - but in two of Walker's three years in office the state added fewer than 30,000 jobs, according to PolitiFact's regular tracking.

    And let's talk about personal income growth, a statistical area for which Walker had claimed success in a recent TV commercial until bloggers and others got PolitiFact to show that, in fact, Wisconsin over the Walker years was dead last in the Midwest and 44th nationally.

    The June, 2012 report had predicted a strong, 4.1% annual increase for 2013.

    By the so-called Winter 2014 report, that projection for 2013 had been cut to 2.9%

    So these official forecasts, few as the are, have exactly what basis in fact, and what value - - beyond PR? The dismal science gets more dismal when number get twisted, cooked and served with side of spin.

    It all reminds me of a Walker "Pants on Fire" rating fully deserved 21 months ago when he greatly overstated the jobs created during his term:

    Wisconsin has created "just under 100,000" jobs since he took office.  

    Scott Walker on Wednesday, December 12th, 2012 in a speech

    Gov. Scott Walker says Wisconsin has created almost 100,000 jobs since he took office


    Max B. said...

    Well summarized, James. Thanks for keeping track of Walker's "Pants-on -Fire" political stratergies for us.

    A. Wag said...

    Will someone please correlate these numbers with the start and end dates Of Becky Kleefisch's cold-calling of northern Illinois companies?