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Alaska jobs growth hurt by sequestration action

March 03, 2013

The Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development published an Employment Forecast in January. The 19 page analysis is superbly done and insightful. Yet the recent moves from Washington to impose sequestration cuts amounting to about 7% of federal spending may reduce employment more than expected.

Alaska Employment Trends for January 2013 highlights a number of developments and trends in the Alaska Labor Force:


In the short term the federal sequestration cuts will cause higher job losses than anticipated in January. The State would be lucky if the job losses were only a few hundred people. More likely a $1 B federal expenditure cut would affect about 1,150 jobs.

In the medium term Alaska has some projects in the mining sector (Donlin in 2016), the oil and gas sector (Shell drilling offshore in 2014) and the giant Susitna-Watana Hydro project toward the end of the decade to count on for economic activity and extra employment. Tourism seems to be picking up as well.