SOUTHFIELD (WWJ) – Oakland County’s economic outlook has good news on the jobs front — the addition of more than 23,000 jobs in 2011.
County Executive L. Brooks Patterson says things were looking pretty glum for about a decade, but that’s changing. The number, he said, are incredibly strong.
County leaders say the expect high-wage jobs will grow by seven percent over the next three years, with middle and low-wage jobs seeing growth too, but at a slower pace.
Analysts say Oakland County’s economy bottomed out in late 2009 and job growth since has outpaced the national average.
And, according to University of Michigan Economist George Fulton , sharing the forecast with reporters on Thursday, 2011 was the best year for total job growth in the county since 1994.
“The Oakland County economy is undergoing a revival after suffering through the difficult years of the 2000s,” Fulton said. “The rebound in the county economy has been almost as impressive as the downturn that preceded it.”
Fulton said, additionally, 2011 was the second-best year for private sector job growth since 1989.
“Oakland ranks 12th overall — an impressive standing, considering that a number of these counties house some of the most robust local economies in the nation,” Fulton said. “The county is especially noteworthy for its share of residents employed in professional and managerial occupations, and for its educated population, both of which bode well for future growth opportunities in higher-paid activities.”
The county expects to add another 11,000 jobs in 2012. And, according to Fulton, job growth in the county is expected to continue for at least the next five years.