Monday, September 30, 2013

Abq Leads August Job Performance.

Within the state’s August 2012 to August 2013 growth of 6,900 jobs (all of 0.9%), the metro picture is mixed.
Albuquerque, of all places, led the pack with 5,100 new wage jobs, a not unhealthy 1.4% increase. The Department of Workforce Services released the figures late Friday, September 27.
In the Duke City, the feds dropped 700 wage employees over the year, half the statewide loss of 1,400. However, local government added 1,100 jobs in the city with 600 more state employees. The government sector as a whole gained 1,000 jobs in Albuquerque.
Overall government lost 3,100 jobs including 2,000 in local government.
Combining the two totals for government—minus 3,100 statewide and plus 1,000 in Albuquerque means the non-Albuquerque part of the state lost 4,100 government jobs. Ouch. Note these figures are not seasonally adjusted. Some of the jobs may reappear in September as school begins.
Leisure and hospitality, a rough proxy for tourism, led the Albuquerque growth with 2,800 more jobs, year over year, or 64% of the 4,400 more jobs statewide.
A big tourism year would one to anticipate a jump in leisure and hospitality in Santa Fe. For the August to August year, that was not the case in Santa Fe where the sector remained unchanged at 10,000 wage jobs. Over the year, Santa Fe lost 400 jobs with a few gains offset by 700 fewer jobs in “other services,” whatever that is.
Las Cruces added 100 jobs while Farmington lost 200 during the period.
Statewide, construction is up 1,200 jobs, the best year over year showing since 2006, DWS said.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Employment Drops in August, Wage Jobs Grow

The New Mexico wage job news continued semi-cheery in August with a 6,900 year over year gain in wage jobs led by a banner year in tourism, aka “leisure and hospitality.” The “semi” stems from gains remaining under one percent from the diminished number of employed at the bottom of the recession.
The Department of Workforce Services released the August jobs report last Friday the 20th.
A statistical cloud appears in the drop in the labor force (from 934,930 to 927,009) and in employment (different from wage jobs) from 868,495 in August 2012 to 866,103 in August 2013. The economy apparently is not firing on enough cylinders to drive both job measures (employment and wage jobs) into positive territory. We’re not recovering yet.
As compared to the nation, nothing significant, statistically significant that is, happened here, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which also released numbers last Friday. Nationally, 29 states reported more wage jobs, 20 reported fewer and Montana had no change.
Leisure and hospitality led the sector growth with 4,400 more wage jobs over the year, a 4.9 percent increase, definitely strong growth. Though the sector is tourism dominated, by virtue of including restaurants, the improvement also includes additional dining out by local residents, behavior that will reflect national and state economic improvement and perhaps a bit of pent-up restlessness.
With 3,600 new wage jobs, or three percent growth, between August 2012 and August 2013, education and health services has picked up the job pace after some lagging months.
The small financial services sector, with 34,900 jobs in July, continues the percentage growth leader among the sectors with a 5.8 percent increase year over year reflecting increased home sales. Increasing mortgage rate won’t help this performance.
Construction showed a decent 2.9 percent year over year increase with 1,200 wage jobs added to the August 2012 base of 41,400. The caution here is that the concepts of health and the construction sector have been an oxymoron for some years.
Mining, which here includes logging, grew by 1.2 percent, or 300 jobs.
Four of the private sectors lost jobs, “led” by manufacturing, down 800 jobs over the year.
Government dropped 3,100 jobs between the Augusts. The federal total was down 1,400 to 30,400, possibly sequester related. State government added 300 jobs including 200 in the education arena. Local government lost 2,000 with 1,300 in education.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Fracking Information Available Here!!

An old friend, Carroll Cagle, asked me to posted these sources of information about fracking, the long-proven technology making our shale boom possible and maybe, in a few years, energy independence.

Harold, as you well know, the battle against fracking is the new jihad by anti-energy forces – esp. now that Keystone XL pipeline no longer uses up all their fervor.

Just as a study shows that fracking is not a big villain re. methane emissions, ant-fracking Cornell disputes THAT study!

Would you be able to post something on this:

The Forbes piece is by Jon Entine responding to criticisms aired yesterday by Cornell scientists re: a recent University of Texas study concerning methane emissions associated with natural gas production. The Cornell scientists said the study was “fatally flawed,” something that is patently untrue. Entine – whose forte is investigative journalism – has written in the past about the fact that Cornell receives significant funding from anti-fracking activist groups – specifically the Park Foundation. So the Entine piece will focus on the bias there, the funding issues, etc.

Gas Leaks in Fracking Disputed in Study
The New York Times, September 16, 2013

Drilling for shale gas through hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, appears to cause smaller leaks of the greenhouse gas methane than the federal government had estimated, and considerably smaller than some critics of shale gas had feared, according to a peer-reviewed study released on Monday.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

August Homes Sales Drop From July

The guess a month ago was that matching the July sales of metro Albuquerque single family detached homes during August would be difficult. The premise was the high percentage of June pending sales that turned into July closed sales. The guess was correct. While 81% of June pending sales became closed sales during July, “only” 74% of the July pending sales closed during August. That meant sales of 857 homes during August, a nine percent or 84 unit drop from July. August sales were up 17% from a year ago.
With August pending sales of 1,011 homes down 13% or 1,158 unit from July, it is reasonable to expect that September sales will drop from August. Seasonality may come into play, too, with the standard decline in sales from the summer peak.
The homes sold during August took an average of 60 days to find a new owner, the same as July. The 60-day average sale period remains the year’s quickest.
During August sale average sale prices increased just a bit from July. The median price grew $500 to $182,500 with the average up $1,028 to $223,533. Both the median and average price was up more than 10% from August 2012.
For the Greater Albuquerque Association of Realtors, which released the August figures September 10, the headline of the month was a 53%, or 62 unit, increase in sales in Rio Rancho as compared to August 2012. The Rio Rancho performance accounted for nearly half of the year over year sales growth during August.
Sales in the east mountain area declined 15 units year over year. GAAR did not mention this.