Friday, August 26, 2016

Las Cruces Wage Jobs Grow 2%

It’s been a while since a two percent year-over-year wage job growth report appeared in the state. Las Cruces, long a metro laggard, made the grade with two percent growth between July 2015 and July 2016.
Albuquerque and Santa Fe did decently well by the New Mexico low bar with, respectively, 5,300 new jobs and 1.4 percent growth and 1,100 jobs and a 1.7 percent increase. Farmington dropped the ball with a loss of 300 jobs, or 0.6 percent, during the period.
The four-metro net job increase was 7,500, which means the rural counties added 2,100 jobs to make the state’s 9,600 new jobs. All these figures are seasonally unadjusted.
The Department of Workforce Solutions released the July job report this afternoon.
New Mexico lost 6,800 jobs during July and gained 9,600 jobs over the year between July 2015 and July 2016. The July losses concentrated in local government, down 6,100 jobs with 5,000 fewer jobs in education. This DWS explains, is an entirely season phenomenon.
Of the 11,700 education and health services new jobs year-over-year mentioned last week, 3,900 were in Albuquerque, 1,200 in Santa Fe and 500 in Santa Fe. The total for the three metros was 5,600 EHS jobs, or 48 percent of the state total. EHS employees worked an average of 32.1 hours each week and earned $20.27 per hour.
Besides EHS, Albuquerque’s other big gainer was professional and business services with 1,800 new jobs year over year. Leisure and hospitality added 500 jobs. Manufacturing lost 1,200.
The 1,200 new EHS jobs in Las Cruces largely explain the city’s year over year job gain of 1,400 jobs.

Friday, August 19, 2016

NM Adds 11,700 Education/Health Jobs. Maybe

If this keeps up, the only people working in New Mexico will be part of the education and health services sector. That’s because the EHS sector added 11,700 jobs between July 2016 and July 2017, the Department of Workforce Solutions reported this afternoon with a straight face. That’s 2,100 more than the seasonally unadjusted wage job growth of 9,600 jobs for the entire state. And that means all the other job sectors sector together lost those 2,100 jobs.
Or not. The DWS release said, “Based on historical seasonal patterns, which have previously shown employment decreases in June and July, these gains are expected to be revised down later.” No DWS estimates appeared for the presumably coming revisions.
The state’s unemployment rate bumped to a seasonally adjusted 6.4%, for third place nationally behind Alaska (6.7%) and Nevada (6.5%). Our unemployment rate increase from 6.2% in June to 6.4% was considered “statistically significant” by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, federal source of the numbers processed by DWS. The labor force grew by 8,500 (encroaching optimism?) to 926,421. The number of wage jobs, seasonally adjusted, grew 7,600 to 830,500.
The mining/logging sector lost 6,600 jobs, year over year. In Lea County, the labor force has dropped 1,200 over the year to 28,291, seasonally unadjusted; employment has dropped 2,000, pushing the unemployment rate to 9.9%.
Manufacturing continued to erode, down another 1,600 jobs to 26,400.
A piece of good news is the 1,900-job increase in professional and business services, pushing the sector total to 102,500. Local government, that engine of growth, added 3,200 jobs, year over year.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Metro Abq Home Sales Down in July

Sales of single family detached homes in metro Albuquerque dropped 1.5% or 16 units from July, according to the monthly sales report released today by the greater Albuquerque Association of Realtors ( The 1,058 closed sales were two ahead of July 2015.
The pending sales are moving to closed sales. In July, 90% of the 1,173 sales pending during June were closed. It was 89% of May pending sales closing in June.
The sold homes were on the market an average of 48 days during July, three more days than during June. This 48-day figure was 12 days, or 20%, faster than the 60 average sales period during July 2015.
Sellers are pretty much getting the price they ask. The selling price was 97.9% of the list price during July. That was a slight increase, one-half of one percent, from July.
Though median and average prices increased from July 2015, the prices dropped from June.
The median detached home price was $189,900, + 3.2% from $184,000 in July 2015 and down 4.6% from $199,000 in June
The average price was $226,192, a 6.8% increase from $2211,769 in July 2015 and down 4% from $235,110 in June.
For attached homes—condos and townhouses—down was the direction for closed sales and prices, both median and average.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Permian Still Loved

The Permian Basin remains a favorite for investors and energy companies. The Permian is in West Texas and loops into southeast New Mexico, Lea County in particular. This comment is from the Wall Street Journal, Saturday/Sunday, August 6-7, 2016 issue, page B1.
"'We don't see a world in which you can balance the supply equation without the Permian,' said Brian Bradshaw, co-chief investment officer at a hedge-fund firm founded by famed oil man, T. Boone Pickens."
The comment was in a story about Parsley Energy, Inc., of Austin and its founder Bryan Sheffield, becoming a billionaire at age 38.