Many people will groan or curse as soon as they see the title of this blog post. I want to be very vocal about the Recession that western North Dakota is about to enter into. I want to warn as many people as possible, as soon as possible.
It is very clear now that oil drilling operations are not going to increase in the next six months, maybe not in twelve months, maybe not in twenty-four months. The only things that could cause a sudden demand for increased U.S. oil production would be a war, or an oil embargo by the Middle East.
There are very few job listings in newspapers and on internet job sites. I have seen the wage rate decrease by several dollars per hour for some of the jobs that are listed. The rents advertised by the recently completed apartment buildings decrease every month as people move away, vacancy rates increase, units become harder to rent, and people are being paid much less money due in part to no overtime being worked.
Driving around Dickinson, Belfield, and Watford City, there is much less traffic, very mild traffic in morning and evening rush hour, and hardly any traffic at all at night. Very few people are going to restaurants and bars. Wal-Mart and the grocery stores are not very busy.
Not everyone is going to be able to remain in western North Dakota. There will not be enough jobs to go around. The highest pay jobs will be mechanics at the car dealers, and nurses at the hospitals. A few city government, state government, and federal government employees will lose their jobs here locally, government workers will lose some jobs. It will come to the point in about a year, that there will be so many people here locally seeking any kind of work, that all the retail jobs will pay about $9 to $10 per hour, and the fast food jobs will pay about $8 per hour, and people will be competing fiercely for these jobs. There will simply not be enough jobs to go around, and the wage rate will drop.
Heavy equipment mechanics, mechanics, equipment operators, electricians, plumbers, and welders that can’t find work in western North Dakota, should be able to find work elsewhere in the United States where they are building, possibly some place like Denver. These workers already know this.
Retail workers and fast food workers, there might not be high wages anywhere else in the U.S., but there are places where the cost of living is less, and it is warmer.
All the crazy, mentally ill, trashy women that came to North Dakota because they couldn’t get a job where they came from, I believe that they will probably stay here in North Dakota, because they have no money, no where to go, and no body wants them. They know, they know that even if they could get hired at Dennys or Cracker Barrel in a different state, the managers, co-workers, and customers wouldn’t put up with their meth addict demeanor and attitude for five minutes.