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Buckeye on Ohio’s Jobs Report

Ohio Sees Unemployment Fall Despite Sluggish Job Growth

Ohio’s May 2022 Jobs Report

Ohio’s job market continued to see mostly strong growth in May with the unemployment rate falling to 3.9 percent (down from four percent)—higher than the national average of 3.6 percent—while workers continued to return to the job market, driving Ohio’s labor force participation rate to 62 percent (up from 61.8 percent)—lower than the national average of 62.3 percent. 

A concerning sign is that Ohio’s private-sector employers added only 1,600 new jobs in May, well below the 9,000 new jobs added in April, making it more difficult for Ohio to erase its pandemic jobs deficit—which stands at more than 90,000 jobs compared to February 2020

Although Ohio’s job market fell behind the national average in the last half of 2021, the state is catching up due to strong job growth in the spring. However, recent economic news has been grim, with inflation spiking to 40-year highs and the Federal Reserve raising interest rates to a nearly 30-year high. While preparing Ohio for a potential economic downturn, Ohio policymakers need to continue to focus on promoting strong job growth. Two smart ways to prepare for the future are to replenish Ohio’s unemployment compensation fund in case of a recession and work with cities to help them modernize their tax policy.