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WisBusiness Tuesday Trends
September 4, 2007

By Brian E. Clark


Household income

Wisconsin’s median household income grew by 3.5 percent in 2006, well
above the national increase of 0.7 percent, according to new U.S.
Census Bureau figures. The gain was partially do to family members
working more hours.

For the Badger State, the median household income is now $48,772 –
slightly above the comparable national figure of $48,201.

The city with the highest median household income is Madison, $50,171;
followed by Waukesha, $48,386 and Appleton at $47,139. Milwaukee, with
a poverty rate of 26.2 percent, had a median household income of $33,990.


Wisconsin workers

The Badger State gained 18,600 jobs in 2006, but wages were down
slightly, and private health insurance coverage declined, according to
The State of Working Wisconsin Update 2007, a report by the
UW-Madison-based Center on Wisconsin Strategy (COWS). The report also
documents continuing racial disparity in the state: Blacks have half
the median income of whites, and one in three of the state’s black
residents lived in poverty in 2006.

According to the report, Wisconsin now has 2.86 million jobs. Though
growth has been slow since the turn of the century, Wisconsin has done
well compared to other states in the region, with only Minnesota and
Iowa generating jobs at a higher rate than Wisconsin over 2000-2006.

But the number of people looking for work also grew along with the
number of jobs. Wisconsin’s 2006 unemployment rate, 4.8 percent,
slightly exceeded the national rate of 4.6 percent. This is the first
time since 1983 that the state’s annual rate of unemployment exceeded
the national rate. See report at


Joy Global

Joy Global Inc. is reporting dramatically lower third quarter net
income, below analyst projections.

The Milwaukee-based firm reported net income during the third fiscal
quarter of $72.9 million, or 66 cents a share, down more than 60
percent from $188.6 million, or $1.53, a year ago; revenue rose to
$621.8 million from $598.7 million. Analysts had projected earnings of
70 cents a share.

The company contributed the fall to weakness in U.S. coal mining and
falling demand for parts and aftermarket services in central
Appalachia, the company’s biggest domestic underground mining market.
In addition, a national work stoppage in South Africa and flooding in
the United Kingdom slowed equipment production.

Officials also said the profit decline was in part because of high
profits in the same quarter caused by a tax gain.

Written exclusively for subscribers. Tuesday Trends is Copyright © 2007.