Gov­ernor Deval Patrick blamed polit­ical grid­lock in Wash­ington and the so-​​called fiscal cliff as a “direct cause” of the eco­nomic slow­down that has tamped state tax col­lec­tions and cre­ated a $500 mil­lion budget short­fall. But econ­o­mists say other fac­tors deserve more blame.

A weak national recovery and global eco­nomic slow­down have weighed on the Mass­a­chu­setts economy since spring, they say. From April to June, before fiscal cliff ref­er­ences became ubiq­ui­tous, employers in the state said their pay­rolls grew at an annual rate of less than 1 per­cent, a sig­nif­i­cant down­shift from the 4 per­cent rate of growth in hiring in the pre­vious three months, according to the US Labor Department.

It’s not entirely due to the fiscal cliff,” North­eastern Uni­ver­sity econ­o­mist Alan Clayton-​​Matthews said of the cut­backs. “We’re all being affected by the slower growth in the US economy and the slow­down in growth in Asia. The world economy is slowing.”

Read the article at The Boston Globe →