Friday, March 13, 2009

Proud to be a DC-ian's otherwise grim article "Jobless Rate Above 10% Defines Recession as Bernanke Predicted" describes partying along the Potomac:

Nationally, the jobless rate moved to a 25-year high of 8.1 percent in February.

The rate will reach 9.4 percent this year and remain above last month’s rate through at least 2011, threatening the nation’s longer-term growth potential, according to the median forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News.

One exception to the grim data is in Washington, D.C., and neighboring Maryland and Virginia. The Obama administration may create 100,000 jobs to help administer the $787 billion economic stimulus package, said Max Stier, who runs the Partnership for Public Service, a non-profit group that monitors government employment.

With federal spending in the metro area increasing in 2009, as it has every year since 1983, that is trickling into the local economy, according to the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia.

Sales at Morton’s steakhouse in downtown Washington are up almost 3 percent from the same time a year ago, said Dan Festa, 41, the general manager. The restaurant has hired nine servers since December, he said.

Business at Washington’s Ritz-Carlton hotel is comparable to two years ago, before the recession hit, said Elizabeth Mullins, who oversees four of the chain’s hotels.

“So far, touch wood, we’re lucky to be in DC!” Mullins said. “I don’t want to rub it in, but I’m so glad to be here.”

I'm so glad that she's so glad. Aren't you glad, too?

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