New Jersey set to make up for lost jobs — and then some, economist says

 Job seekers are silhouetted while waiting in line to attend a career fair put on by National CareerFairs in San Jose, Calif in 2010. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg,file)

Job seekers are silhouetted while waiting in line to attend a career fair put on by National CareerFairs in San Jose, Calif in 2010. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg,file)

New Jersey has regained 91 percent of the jobs lost during the recession.

Nancy Mantell, the director of the Rutgers Economic Advisory Service, predicts the balance will be recovered by early next year.

The most job growth over the next decade will be in education and health services, leisure and hospitality, and government, Mantell predicted.

“I know government is sort of a surprise, but government really goes primarily with population because it’s mostly at the local level,” she said. “So, as the population continues to grow, I do expect some increase in government employment.”

Those are not particularly high-wage sectors, so personal income in the state might not advance as much as the national average.

But Mantell predicted prices will go up an average of 2.5 percent annually over the next 10 years while incomes will rise about 4 percent.

“So that does mean that there is some increase in real wages,” she said. “That’s good news for the economy. It does keep New Jersey as a high-income state compared to the rest of the country, which is what it has been.”

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