Friday, May 17, 2013

Wages Jobs Grow One Percent, Wondrous, Amazing

The job news from the New Mexico economic was good in April, not statistically significant, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which released numbers today.
The labor force grew and the number of unemployed dropped, meaning that the economy absorbed the new potential workers plus a little.
The employment growth (seasonally adjusted and not wage jobs which are different from “employment”) was 10,200, or 1.2%, between April 2012 and April 2013. The labor force added 8,800. The unseasonally adjusted figures behaved about the same.
While I haven’t tracked this labor force / employment metric is detail, my sense is that the performance is fairly amazing given our performance for five or six years.
Wage job growth was one percent, a gain of 7,900, for the April to April year, the Department of Workforce Services reported today. It was April 2008, five years ago, when wage job growth last hit one percent, DWS said.
The big statewide sector turn was in construction with an 1,800 job gain, the best year over year performance for the sector since 2006. Leisure and hospitality continued to lead the sector performance with 2,500 more jobs since April 2012.
The professional and business services sectors lost another 1,500 jobs over the year, presumably mostly from defense contracting companies which means mostly Albuquerque and Santa Fe. I don’t think furloughs are shown in this figure because at least those folks furloughed for a few days each month are still working, depending on the definition of being a full-time employee.
Growth has resumed in educational and health services with an 1,800-job April to April increase. Financial activities added 1,700 jobs over the year, continuing the rapid expansion of the past few months.
State government added 1,600 jobs including 1,300 in education. The feds dropped 1,200 jobs. Say “sequester.”
Employment even grew in Bernalillo County with 4,725 more jobs bringing the total employed in the county to 287,740. Employment grew a few hundred in the other three metropolitan counties: Santa Fe, Dona Ana and San Juan. DWS will have wage job figures for the metros in a week or so.

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