News Release

What Kind of Spending Creates the Most Jobs?

HEIDI GARRETT-PELTIER, hpeltier at econs.umass.edu
Assistant research professor at the Political Economy Research Institute, Garrett-Peltier is author of several reports on employment impacts of spending including “The U.S. Employment Effects of Military and Domestic Spending Priorities” (with Robert Pollin) and “Pedestrian and Bicycle Infrastructure: A National Study of Employment Impacts.”

She said today: “Many people say that we need military spending because that creates jobs. That’s certainly true, military spending creates military-related jobs. But the question we asked is if we’re spending $1 billion in public funds, what kind of spending creates the most jobs? We found that clean energy spending creates 1.5 times as many jobs as military spending. Health care spending creates even more. Education spending creates a lot more — about three times as many jobs as military spending, dollar for dollar. This is largely a function of how labor intensive a form of spending is (as opposed to capital intensive) and how much of the money leaves the country.”

MIKE PROKOSCH, mikeprokosch at verizon.net
Prokosch is with the New Priorities Network. He said today: “The Pentagon approach to any potential cuts is to keep foreign bases, weapons systems and contracts — while making the grunts carry the weight.