A New Report for an Unpredictable Era
For more than two decades, we’ve released The State of Working Wisconsin. In 2020, we launched a new digital report to meet the reality of the COVID-19 crisis.
Tracking the Crisis
In March 2020, COVID-19’s impact on the economy was immediate. Jobs plummeted. Unemployment skyrocketed. Key data show how we are doing relative to February 2020, before the collapse.
In March 2021, Wisconsin had 4.9% fewer jobs than before the COVID-19 crisis hit.
In March 2021, unemployment held steady at 3.8%, remaining just above the February 2020 level (3.5%).
This sector – restaurants, hotels, and more – has been hardest hit; it has lost one-fifth of its jobs.
Explore the Data
Our Interactive Data Dashboard
The impact of COVID-19 is fast-moving and frequently changing. Dig deeper into unemployment and jobs data, comparing Wisconsin, the US, and the 50 states.
Explore the Data
Our Analysis of the Monthly Data
Because of the virus, this crisis is unlike other economic recessions. Each month, new economic data is released. We analyze these economic indicators through the lens of how they impact working people.
Data Analysis & Insights
Context In March 2020, the US took dramatic steps to stop the spread of COVID-19. Many states issued stay-at-home orders and the economy contracted dramatically. Jobs fell away and unemployment spiked. After the collapse more …April 21, 2021
In February, Wisconsin continued its economic growth as more residents were vaccinated and some areas loosened restrictions on indoor dining, gatherings, and more.March 29, 2021
There are number of sources of hope: falling COVID cases, increasing vaccination, and the federal American Rescue Plan. In the coming months, hopefully these positive signs will turn into economic opportunity for the workers in Wisconsin who need it most.March 19, 2021
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Pandemic Exposes and Exacerbates Black-white Disparities
Before the COVID-19 crisis, Black-white disparities in Wisconsin were among the worst in the nation. COWS documented these disparities in our 2019 report, Race in the Heartland. As COVID-19 has widened Black-white gaps nationally, Wisconsin’s racial divide, already pronounced, is likely growing as well. The response to the crisis and the recovery must focus on racial justice.