MassBenchmarks

MassBenchmarks

Economic indicators, including the just released unemployment rate for April, are generally positive for Massachusetts.  But, a panel of economists writing  in the economic journal MassBenchmarks warns the state’s economy is on precarious footing. 

WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with Robert Nakosteen, an economics professor at UMass Amherst and executive editor of MassBenchmarks.

Massachusetts is coming off the strongest year for job growth since 2000.  Even in Springfield, which has struggled to recover from the recession, there are signs of better times.

      As 2014 came to a close, the Massachusetts unemployment rate fell to 5.5 percent, down from 5.8 percent in November and 7.1 percent a year ago.  The state’s unemployment rate is now the lowest since the summer of 2008 before the Great Recession hit.

There is great uncertainty about the impact the federal budget cuts, through the process known as sequestration, will have on the Massachusetts economy.   But regional economists remain cautiously optimistic, according to an analysis released this week.