recession

Where does poverty live? In the U.S., we think of it existing in rundown rural trailer parks or dangerous inner city neighborhoods. Today Zachary Roth digs into the the rise in suburban poverty brought on by the recession. More poor Americans now live in the suburbs than in cities. That may especially be a problem because “many suburbs may not be as well set up as urban areas are to provide much-needed social services,” he says.

One of the upsides of the recession is that it cut back on the amount of unnecessary spending in America. We were shelling out too much for clothes, appliances, video games, cosmetics, car accessories—you name it. And then we were spending on stuff to store all the stuff we’d bought but didn’t have a place for.

But all that stuff, ironically, has been a boon in the recession, argues Virginia Postrel in an interesting Wall Street Journal story this weekend. When we had to cut back on spending, we could turn to our personal storehouses of tee shirts and tube socks…

From today’s New York Times:

Many economists — concerned about the sluggish pace of job creation, dwindling housing activity and decelerating retail sales — say that slowdown is continuing this summer and have recently downgraded their expectations for the second half of the year.

Read more here.

The American Dream is dead– and it ain’t a bad thing.

In a recent survey by Context-Based Research Group, a Baltimore consumer anthropology firm, 78 percent of respondents said they believed the AD was kaput. But they also agreed that it should be, because the dream has become defined by what you can buy, rather than by freedom and ideals.

If there’s one thing we learned in the past few years, it’s that lots of things are more important than money. So here’s some more good news: Those surveyed said they had taken steps to spend less (85 percent) and had de-cluttered their homes (61 percent). Well, now that all that stuff is gone, what’s taken its place? People…

We’re enjoying a new web show, Economy Bites, that just hit our radar screen. Created just last year in the heart of the recession, it’s dedicated to making cooking cheap and easy — perfect for those of us who have less money without out jobs or less time because we’re working so hard to stay employed.

Hosted by Texas native Allie Schwartz, the show’s motto is, “Cook on Sunday, eat til Thursday.” It’s not exactly gourmand fare. If the Food Network is steamy, glistening food porn, then Economy Bites is amateur food porn…

A daily review of the employment fallout around the country and the world.

Today’s total: up to 19,304

Mayor Bloomberg says New York City may have to lay off a whopping 19,000 workers if the governor cuts $1.3 billion in aid as he plans…ArcelorMittal will can 171 steelworkers at its tin mill in West Virginia…ITT Communication Systems is eliminating 60 jobs in Fort Wayne, Ind….book wholesaler and distributor Ingram Content Group gave 57 Tennessee employees the boot…Tower Tech in Abilene, Texas is cutting 15 jobs

Most Popular Stories of 2009

by the Editors on December 31, 2009 in Culture

In 2009 we lost our jobs, launched Recessionwire, found new gigs, lost one and left another, found new new jobs and freelance work, made countless new friends and learned more than we could have imagined. It’s been kind of awesome, thanks in no small part to our readers. We love you! And here’s what you loved to read on Recessionwire in 2009…

10. In October, we suggested readers Get Their Recession Scare On, with our downturn-themed Halloween costumes like the Bear Market and the Housing Bubble. Hilarious, even though we left out Sara’s idea of tossing on a plastic poncho and going as TARP.

9. Bad enough to lose your salary—the Incredible Shrinking Severance Check adds insult to injury…

A daily review of the employment fallout around the country and the world.

Today’s Total: over

Lithuania is shutting down its only nuclear power facility, eliminating more than 2,000 jobsLouisiana is eliminating 445 healthcare positions

It was a very big year.

Several months ago we wrote about “recession speed“—the way things happened at an accelerated pace in the downturn. Banks failed overnight. Jobs vanished in a snap. In 2009, we’ve all experienced sudden losses, big and small. But (the upside!) we’ve also learned, earned and reaped some benefits. Here’s a partial roster of what’s been lost and found. What else should be on the list? Tell us in comments.

What We Lost

Jobs: The Department of Labor hasn’t put out official numbers for all of 2009, but adding up monthly data shows that more than 4 million jobs have been lost this year. More than 15 million people are looking for jobs in the U.S.

Any Sense of Job Security: See above.

question-mark-chart-150In November, both the number of unemployed persons, at 15.4 million, and the unemployment rate, at 10.0 percent, edged down. At the start of the recession in December 2007, the number of unemployed persons was 7.5 million, and the jobless rate was 4.9 percent. (via Bureau of Labor Statistics report)

Why it might be false: One positive jobs report is kind of like a diamond in the rough when you look at it against the backdrop of other employment indicators, such as the high number of laid-off workers who don’t see jobs on the horizon; part-time workers are an army of 9.3 million—the highest ever; and the number of people collecting unemployment benefits stands around 10 million. Ten million