Friday, May 20, 2016

State Job Picture Nets Nothing. Abq improves 1%.

Some economic improvement seems to be happening in Albuquerque, meaning Bernalillo County. In April, as compared to April 2015, the labor force was up 2,500. Employment was up 5,000 and unemployment was down 2,400. The employment gain is about 1.3%, so hold the excitement. The net is a 4.9% unemployment rate for April.
The Department of Workforce Solutions released the job report this afternoon.
The state is another story. Basically, oil offset welfare for a net of nothing.
The wage job total dropped 300, April to April. Since all these ever so precise numbers come from estimates, the total could just as well have been a 300-job increase. The Bureau of Labor Statistics review of statistically significant job happenings during the month left out New Mexico. The NM DWS gets the numbers from the BLS.
Mining, meaning, mostly, oil and gas has lost a quarter of its jobs since April 2015. More are coming (or going). A potash mine is closing in Carlsbad. Intrepid Potash is putting its West facility into what it calls “a care and maintenance mode” in July and laying off 300 employees. Intrepid got 42% of its potash production from the West facility in 2015, the company said.
The sectors with larger job increases were education and health services, plus 6,900 jobs or 5.2%, and professional and business services, plus 1,400 jobs or 1.4%.
A surprise was the 1,600 one-month job loss in leisure and hospitality. DWS’ explanation was the changes appear “to be due to atypical seasonal changes in several subsector areas in the industry.” If you understand that, let me know.
Another DWS explanatory winner was about mining, “Growth fell negative in March 2015 and has declined in every month since January 2015, except the last two months.”

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