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Welcome to the Econ Quiz!

ECON QUIZ is featured weekly in the business section of the Wisconsin State Journal. It is written by the staff of the Center for Community and Economic Development. Questions or Comments about the data, data sources, or just want more information? We can also provide step by step instructions so you can easily obtain this […]

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Unemployment, Part II

The official unemployment rate (U3) used by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is not based on the number of people collecting unemployment benefits. It is based on a monthly national survey of 60,000 households. U3 includes individuals who do not have a job, have actively looked for a job in the last four […]

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The Unemployed?

Preliminary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the official seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in March in Wisconsin fell slightly from 6.9 to 6.8 percent. What does the official unemployment rate include? A. All people eligible for unemployment benefits B. All people who are unemployed regardless of whether they are eligible for unemployment […]

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Bedroom Communities II

The U.S. Census reports that only 9 percent of the 16,335 people working in the City of Middleton in 2010 also lived in Middleton.  Similarly, the majority of people working in Fitchburg (91%), Monona (97%), Verona (89%), Sun Prairie (77%), and Waunakee (81%) did not live in the communities where they worked. What types of jobs are attracting […]

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Bedroom Communities

Many view the suburban communities surrounding larger cities as good places to live and raise a family, but hardly as centers of employment. The fact that in 2010 over 80 percent of the employed residents of the Madison area communities of Waunakee, Middleton, Fitchburg, Monona, Verona, and Sun Prairie worked outside the community where they […]

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Number of jobs & unemployment rate fall?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Wisconsin lost 22,300 jobs between February 2011 and February 2012. The BLS also reports that the official unemployment rate in Wisconsin improved from a seasonally adjusted 7.6 percent to 6.9 percent during the same period. How can the unemployment rate and the number of jobs both decline? […]

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How Much is Enough?

Anyone who bought a lottery ticket last week probably spent a few minutes dreaming about how $640 million would change their life?  Those dreams can now be realities for the three people who picked the winning numbers in last week’s biggest ever Mega Millions Lottery.   Each winner will receive about $100 million after taxes. Each […]

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Wal-Mart, the largest grocer in the U.S.

The first Wal-Mart Supercenter opened in 1988 in Missouri.  By 1998, Wal-Mart had 441 Supercenters in the U.S. Today, there are 2,907 Supercenters accounting for 77 percent of the 700 million square feet of Wal-Mart retail space in the U.S. Adding groceries was a major factor driving the creation of Supercenters.  The primary motivation was […]

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Wal-Mart Revisited

One again, Wal-Mart ranks #1 on the Fortune 500 list of America’s largest corporations with total worldwide sales of $443.9 billion. That is more than the combined sales of Costco, Target, Walgreens, Sears, Kroger, Kohl’s and J.C. Penny. During the same period, Wal-Mart’s sales in the U.S. (not including Sam’s Clubs) were $264 billion. The […]

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Living Alone, Part II

Last week’s TGIF highlighted the fact that there are more single person households than households comprised of married couple families with children in sixty-six of Wisconsin’s seventy-two counties. Much of the attention on single person households focuses on people age 65 years and older. In 2010, what percentage of the 669,106 people living alone in […]

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Living Alone

It likely comes as no surprise that there are more single person households in the City of Madison than households comprised of married couples with children.  According to the U.S. Census, 36 percent of Madison households had only one person in 2010.  Only 21 percent of the 102,516 households in the City were comprised of a husband, […]

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