The happenings "inside" the Wisconsin State Treasury and across the street at the State Capitol

Archive for April, 2012

April eBay Auction Ends

The auction ended this morning and the biggest highlight of the unclaimed property auction was the 1 carat diamond ring.

It sold for a little more than $3,600. That money, and all the funds collected from the auction, will return to the unclaimed property account in the original owners name. if they or their heirs make a claim, they get the money!

The May auction will be here sooner than you think! Sign up for our mailing list to get an update on when the next auction will take place!


FAQ: Where can I find proof of former residence?

There are several places you can obtain proof of a former address. You may want to look for old employment or school records, tax returns, or bank statements. Another place that will usually list past addresses is on a credit report, which you can request free at

Additionally if the property is from MetLife, Prudential Financial or John Hancock, our office can try to verify your identity using your date of birth.

I've started so I'll finish

I've started so I'll finish (Photo credit: get down)

This Week’s Unclaimed Property Quiz!

Who wants to win an awesome Wisconsin Treasury Tote Bag? This week’s unclaimed property quiz involves reporting funds to the office. It’s multiple choice. Those who answer correctly by 4PM will have their names thrown into a hat and a winner from that group will be chosen randomly You must answer the question on our facebook page – click here to get to that page, like us and answer the question!

To help you, all answers can be found somewhere on our website –

Here’s the question:
How long can a business hold employee wages that were never claimed before reporting those unclaimed assets to our office?
A) 1 year
B) 2 years
C) 5 years
D) Forever – if an employee fails to claim wages, the company can keep them.
Good luck!

Your prize! A Tote Bag!

The Economy & You #30: WI #2 in Dependence on Manufacturing

Last week I posted an article talking about why manufacturing is important and the research Brookings conducted on this topic.  While there are economists that contend that manufacturing is not as important to the economy as others believe, there is certainty that specific states rely on manufacturing as an important part of their economy.

 A recent article by EMSI examined the question of how to measure just how dependent states are on manufacturing.  While some may consider the total number of jobs or the number of exports as a method of measurement, this article put forward a concentration measure known as location quotient (LQ). Location quotient way of quantifying how concentrated a particular industry, cluster, occupation, or demographic group is in a region as compared to the nation.

 According to EMSI, location quotient is a ratio that compares a region to a larger reference region according to some characteristic or asset. Suppose X is the amount of manufacturing jobs in a region, and Y is the total amount of jobs in the region. X/Y is then the regional concentration of manufacturing jobs in the region.

Industry LQs are calculated in a similar way by comparing the industry’s share of regional employment with its share of national employment. Suppose that breweries in the state (NAICS 31212) account for 0.16% of all regional jobs but only 0.015% of all national jobs. The region’s LQ for Breweries would then be (.16 / .015) = 10.67, meaning that breweries are nearly 11 times more concentrated in the region than average.

The location quotient provides a different story than merely job numbers or job growth. Industries with high LQ are typically (but not always) export-oriented industries, which are important because they bring money into the region.  This is in contrast to restaurants and retail that circulate money that is already in the region. Industries that have high LQ and high total job numbers usually form the region’s economic base. Economic developers and government officials need to pay close attention to these industries. These industries typically provide above average wage jobs as well as jobs in other industry sectors like retail trade and food services also known as the multiplier effect (see previous article explaining the multiplier effect).

The article provides an overview of the 10 states most dependent on manufacturing, with the top five subsectors for each based on their concentration compared to the nation. A location quotient of 1.00 is the national average, and an LQ of 1.20 and above indicates the industry is specialized in the state. Please Note: All 2011 jobs and LQ figures are estimates because of lags in federal and state data sources. The numbers cited come from EMSI’s 2011.4 Covered Employment dataset.

Ranking (by 2011 LQ)


2011 Manufacturing Jobs

2001-11 % Job Change

2001 Job Concentration (LQ)

2011 Job Concentration (LQ)

2001-11 LQ % Change

Source: EMSI Covered Employment (2011.4)

1 Indiana 454,542 -26% 1.70 1.86 9.4%
2 Wisconsin 444,824 -21% 1.64 1.85 12.8%
3 Iowa 204,560 -15% 1.33 1.55 16.5%
4 Arkansas 157,813 -30% 1.58 1.51 -4.4%
5 Michigan 499,462 -39% 1.47 1.46 -0.7%
6 Alabama 238,711 -27% 1.38 1.45 5.1%
7 Ohio 631,252 -34% 1.40 1.41 0.7%

 Reviewing the list, one will see industries with rapidly declining or growing LQs. Michigan’s concentration in auto manufacturing declined 15% from 2001 to 2011. On the flip side, Alabama’s concentration in auto manufacturing grew more than 466% in the last decade, indicating that the state is now taking up a much larger share of national employment. Also note that growing employment paired with declining LQ indicates that the industry is not growing as fast in the state as it is in the national economy.

Here is EMSI’s summary of what taken place in Wisconsin.

Wisconsin (LQ: 1.85; 2001-11 Job Change: -21%)

Wisconsin is significantly more concentrated in manufacturing than the next state on the list, Iowa. Leading the way are other transportation equipment manufacturing (7.15) and dairy product manufacturing (6.24), the latter of which is certainly not a surprise to see high on this list. Notice the big increase in foundries (5.83, up 26.5%) compared to the nation, and the substantial decline in pulp and paper mills (5.82, and 17.6% decline).



2011 Jobs

2011 Average Earnings

2001 LQ

2011 LQ

LQ % Change

3369 Other Transportation Equipment Manufacturing 4,905 $86,543 7.78 7.15 -8.1%
3115 Dairy Product Manufacturing 16,749 $45,295 6.02 6.24 3.7%
3315 Foundries 14,157 $51,783 4.61 5.83 26.5%
3221 Pulp, Paper, and Paperboard Mills 13,353 $64,630 7.06 5.82 -17.6%
3353 Electrical Equipment Manufacturing 13,729 $71,270 4.62 4.86 5.2%

Treasurer’s Top 5: Green Lake County

We’ve been having a great few weeks returning unclaimed property back to the citizens of the great state of Wisconsin. We’d love to continue this trend, so here’s the top 5 people in Green Lake County who have money/assets that belong to them and they even don’t know it! You may have missing cash as well, so search our website today.

The Green Lake County Courthouse in Green Lake...

The Green Lake County Courthouse in Green Lake, Wisconsin, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Green Lake County

Valerie Jacobson – Green Lake

Jane Glass – Berlin

Dennis Caroll – Berlin

Matthew Berres – Berlin

Seth Coll – Berlin

 If you or someone you know is on this list, please let them know they need to make a claim with the office. They can also call us at 855-375-CASH

Taking Care of Memories

A blog I posted earlier this month drew some interest from a Madison reporter reporter last week. David Douglas from News 3 came to the office to talk about the items in that particular abandoned safe deposit box as well as all the money we are returning on a daily basis.

Here’s his story!

Follow-up to Money Matters: Identity Theft


I want to thank for not only being watchful of scams but also being efficient and quick when there’s an issue with their blogs.

After posting today’s Money Matters on Identity Theft and discussing social security numbers, WordPress immediately deactivated our blog! Their automatic anti-spam controls believed the blog was trying to not only spam the blogosphere but also phish for people’s information. I say, great job!

Of course, I was a little worried for about 15 minutes trying to figure out how to fix the issue. After sending emails via the WordPress site as well as posting on their forum and tweeting them, I received an email from support staff explaining what happened and apologizing…and reactivating the blog.

That’s professionalism! Thanks, WordPress!