Hat tip to Paul Kedrosky for this eye opening chart.  The source data can be found here but as they say a picture is worth a thousand words; clearly there is a localized depression in the metro Detroit area.

[click to enlarge]

As you view in shock and awe, I'd also like to point out the city in the far LEFT of the chart - i.e. where all the jobs are.  It's a sick indictment of what is going on in the country.

(please note, the data seems to be from a search engine for job searches - so we can question the absolute accuracy, but the key is magnitude of difference)

To newer readers please understand I have Michigan economic bias [Jun 25, 2008: I have Michigan Economic Bias] and of course one is affected by what one sees/hears locally on a day to day, year to year basis.  That said, seeing what was happening locally..... ahead of the rest of the country, helped me have conviction in my predictions on what would happen to the country as a whole back in 2007. [Dec 4, 2007: Predictions for the Coming 6 Months]  While I try not to extrapolate Detroit to the rest of the country, my main hope is we are not the canary in the coal mine for a country dependent on finance, government, shopping, home flipping, and health care for its prosperity. 

Obviously a reader from Texas has a whole different world view than someone who has *this* situation within a 30 minute drive. [May 15: One City Block in Detroit]   And someone in Washington D.C. is simply asking what recession?