The “Misery Rate” — a Bloomberg index of government data combining consumer prices and the jobless rate — is over 10 percent in President Barack Obama’s home town, and under 7 percent in Republican Mitt Romney’s home town.
The rate reported today is 10.16 percent in Chicago, with consumer prices up 1.06 percent from year to year and the unemployment rate at 9.1 percent.
In Boston, it’s 6.95 percent, with consumer prices up 0.85 percent year to year and the jobless rate at 6.1 percent.
The index is compiled by Bloomberg, using data provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Now, this isn’t likely to have much impact on an election in which both Chicago and Boston are true-blue cities in the Democratic Party’s column. But what about some other places?
Like Cleveland, Ohio — in the one state that Romney must win if he wants the White House.
The misery index is 8.68 percent — with consumer prices up 1.38 percent year to year and unemployment at 7.3 percent.
Or Miami, in the state that Obama won in 2008 and hopes to claim again in 2012.
Misery index: 10.51 percent, with consumer prices up 1.14 percent year to year and unemployment at 9.3 percent.
Or Detroit, heart of the auto industry that Obama boasts about saving and Romney wanted to follow a course of bankruptcy.
Misery index: 12.35 percent, with consumer prices up 0.45 percent year to year and unemployment at 11.9 percent.
The presidential election will play out on some important economic battlegrounds, some in better shape than others.