Unemployment Rate as Super Bowl Predictor Holds Up
The Packer's defeat of the Steelers in the Super Bowl continued the trend that links the Super Bowl victor to lowest unemployment rates. As of yesterday, for the 17th time in the past 20 years, the Super Bowl winning team hails from the metropolitan area with the lower unemployment rate (of the two teams). We hate to say we told you so, but we did!
The Green Bay metropolitan area had a 6.6 percent unemployment rate in December 2010 and an annual rate of 7.6 percent, compared to a December rate of 7.5 percent and an annual rate of 8.3 percent for Pittsburgh.
Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that the team whose metropolitan area boasts the lower jobless rate has enjoyed an 85 percent success rate since Super Bowl XXVI, when Washington (4.6 percent 1991 unemployment) defeated Buffalo (7.2 percent). That's according to data pointed out by RiseSmart, a provider of next-generation outplacement and recruitment solutions.
"Could it be a coincidence? Of course -- but it is certainly a fascinating correlation," said Sanjay Sathe, CEO of RiseSmart. "Who's to say that a city's economic prosperity, as measured by jobless rates, doesn't have at least some effect on fan support, team morale and other factors that could influence the Super Bowl's outcome?"
As an indicator of the economic difficulties Americans face today, Sunday's Super Bowl marked the first in the past 20 years in which both teams represented metro areas with annual jobless rates exceeding 7 percent.