OMAHA – Nebraska may be faring slightly better than neighboring states in weathering the economic recession according to data on the Nebraska Economic Recovery Dashboard, a joint project of the UNO Center for Public Affairs Research (CPAR) and the Planning Committee of the Nebraska State Legislature.
"CPAR's Nebraska Economic Recovery Dashboard is incredibly useful to policymakers as we evaluate the many external factors that affect our state's economy. We are learning now that while it may seem that Nebraska may be faring better than some of our neighbor states, we still have work to do to ensure ‘the good life’ is attainable for all Nebraskans," cautioned Senator Tony Vargas, chair of the Planning Committee.
Weekly employment numbers for Nebraska dropped drastically in April this year with 53,016 fewer jobs than the previous month. However, employment declined in in Nebraska by a smaller percent between March and April than in every neighboring state, according to recently updated dashboard data.
Nebraska also made some economic gains in the lead-up to the pandemic. Wage growth in Nebraska trailed some neighboring states in prior years, but there had been steady growth in all four quarters of 2019. “The hope would be that Nebraska rebounds and continues on the upward trajectory that it was on,” Josie Schafer, director of the UNO Center for Public Affairs Research said.
While pre-recession wage growth may have put Nebraska residents in a good position heading into the pandemic, Nebraska’s home prices have also risen consistently since 2011. The dashboard includes the House Price Index from the Federal Housing Finance Agency, measured quarterly from 2000 to present for the United States, Nebraska, and its neighboring states. The index has increased faster in Nebraska than in Iowa, Kansas, and Missouri over the past ten years.
The Nebraska Economic Recovery Dashboard complies data from multiple sources for Nebraska and surrounding states. Data is updated regularly to provide timely, ongoing information during the evolving pandemic. The dashboard can be accessed at cpar.unomaha.edu/policy. All data is freely available for public, journalistic, and other uses with proper attribution.
About the University of Nebraska at Omaha
Located in one of America’s best cities to live, work and learn, the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) is Nebraska’s premier metropolitan university. With more than 15,000 students enrolled in 200-plus programs of study, UNO is recognized nationally for its online education, graduate education, military friendliness and community engagement efforts. Founded in 1908, UNO has served learners of all backgrounds for more than 100 years and is dedicated to another century of excellence both in the classroom and in the community.