Ask any of the “talking heads” that appear as “experts” on the nightly cable news/entertainment programming and you will get an opinion on the state of the national recession. They will also offer their opinion as to how to restart the sluggish economy. However, for those of us in Northwest Ohio, the numbers tell the story on the state of the economy and it is not a good one.
The Toledo Blade recently reported on area bankruptcy cases for NW Ohio. The Toledo Blade article on Bankruptcy cases filed show that overall cases were up by 6% in the month of August when compared to August of 2009. This trend bucked the overall national trend and represented the highest number of filings since August of 2005. Nationally, bankruptcy filings fell by 8% in August according to a Wall Street Journal blog written by Sara Murray and citing statistics from the American Bankruptcy Institute.
The Toledo Blade also reported on the continuing glut of foreclosures and mortgage delinquencies in the state of Ohio. A recent Toledo Blade article on mortgages stated that 10.03% of all mortgages in Ohio were either 1 or more months delinquent. Additionally, the article reported that 4.82% of all Ohio borrowers were in foreclosure. Ohio ranked ninth out of all 50 states in this category.
As you can see, the numbers are not encouraging for Ohio and much of the Midwest. What can change the trend and lead to an economic recovery? A change in the leadership in Congress? Not likely. As a nation we have been following many of the same policies for the past 30 years. Perhaps we need a thorough review of our national tax and trade policies over the past 30 years which have encouraged the decline in our national manufacturing base. However, there is one thing that I am certain of… it is that the solution will not be found on the nightly cable shows.