Friday, December 24, 2010

Wage Jobs Drop 4,400 For Year, 3,700 For Month

New Mexico lost 4,400 wage jobs in the year from November 2009 to November 2010 and 3,700 jobs from October 2010 to November. This brought the number of wage jobs to 808,200 in November, a one half of one percent (0.5%) loss for the year. The performance allowed the Department of Workforce Services to say in its curious doublespeak, “Job growth has gradually improved from a low of negative 4.9 percent posted in October and November 2009.” I guess less negative is better.
The good new about this month’s report is that three critical sectors reported year-over-year gains: mining (+600); manufacturing (+1,600); and leisure and hospitality (+1,400).
Local government overall lost 500 jobs, but what is called “local government education” (the public schools, I think), lost 2,300 over the year, meaning that the rest local government added 1,800 jobs.
Because jumping on my usual “how can that happen” platform, it’s worth noting that some of the movement may be just statistical.
NMSU New Mexico Business Outlook electronic newsletter for December ( puts it this way. “The employment situation statewide is mixed. The establishment survey, which measures job creation, indicates an increase of 0.6 percent in October 2010 compared to October 2009. This is the first positive year-over-year job growth statistic since the start of the recession in October 2008.
“While the establishment survey shows growth, the household survey, which measures employment, was down 0.3 percent. This conflict between the establishment and household surveys is common at the bottom of a recession and indicates that the recession is all but over.”
The December issue of New Mexico Business Outlook also has a dandy explanation of state government retirement plan issues.
While metro Albuquerque did add 700 jobs in November, the Duke City continues as the state’s metro loss leader, as it were, losing 6,700 wage jobs year-over-year. Albuquerque’s big losses were in construction (-3,100) and professional and business services (-3,800).
Santa Fe is the second place metro job loser, down 400 for the year. Santa Fe’s professional and business services sector lost 400 while state government added 100.
Farmington dropped another 200 wage jobs, year-over-year.
The math (6,700 plus 400 plus 200 minus 4,400) indicates that the rest of the state gained 2,900 jobs for the period.
Las Cruces is recovering, NMSU has observed for several months. The gain was 1,500 wage jobs for year with 1,100 of the gain coming in professional and business services.

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