Unemployment in the United States is uncomfortably high, largely thanks to business-killing government lockdown orders and the coronavirus pandemic’s monumental impact on the economy.
While residents of American cities appear most damaged by the shifting tides, one heartland metropolitan area has managed not only to avoid a spiking unemployment rate but even to bring the number down.
Owensboro, Kentucky, is the only city listed on a United States Bureau of Labor Statistics report that managed to reduce its unemployment rate from June 2019 to June 2020.
According to a data table from the BLS, the city’s unemployment rate dropped from 4.4 percent to 4.2 percent over the course of the last twelve months.
This happened as the local economies of other cities were gutted by the pandemic.
In Orlando, Florida, where tourism is king and airlines supply a constant flow of out-of-state money, coronavirus shutdowns and other restrictions saw the city’s unemployment rate jump to an astronomical 16.5 percent from 3.2 percent in June 2019.
New York City residents are faring no better.
With a governor who thinks regulating chicken wings will end the pandemic and a mayor who seems to only be focused on bashing his own police force, it doesn’t take an economist to figure out why the Big Apple boasts a shocking 17 percent unemployment rate.
In June 2019, however, both of these cities had a lower unemployment rate than Owensboro.
The secret of this Kentucky city’s success is in the sauce, it seems. Bourbon whiskey, to be exact.
According to CNN, Owensboro is home to several distilleries, including O.Z. Tyler and one belonging to the Sazerac Company.
In addition to its booming booze business, the city is also home to tobacco producers. At a stressful and uncertain time like the present, are there any better industries to have investments in?
It turns out there is at least one, and Owensboro has that market cornered as well.
The city is home not only to bourbon and tobacco but also to Unifirst, a company that makes uniforms and personal protective equipment. Supplies of this essential gear infamously failed to meet demand in America earlier this year.
This drought of equipment led to counterfeits as scammers took full advantage of the panic but also secured jobs for hardworking Americans behind legitimate gear.
As liberal cities now struggle to bring their economies back to life, Owensboro is leading the way with booze, smokes and vital gear.
God bless the great state of Kentucky.
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