Michigan actually lost more jobs in 2001 than 2008
Michigan's economy in the 21st Century is defined by two major recessions: the one in 2001 and the most recent in 2008.
But the tale of two recessions is a cautionary one that says public policy that discourages business can play as big a part in economic down swings as plant closings, said James Hohman, assistant director of fiscal policy at the Mackinac Center for Public Policy.
Consider that in the first three quarters of 2001, Michigan gained 808,142 jobs and lost 935,458. However, in the last quarter of 2008 and the first two quarters of 2009, Michigan lost 883,412 jobs, about 52,000 fewer jobs lost than eight years earlier. But Michigan only added 577,743 jobs in those three quarters in 2008-09, about 29 percent fewer jobs added than in 2001.
Job stifling legislation or regulations can be just as damaging to the economy as a plant shuttering, Hohman said.
"Recessions are caused just as equally by jobs not being created as much as people losing their jobs," Hohman said.