Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Rural Counties Lose 1,400 jobs

The January 2016 to January 2017 net job performance for New Mexico’s four metro areas was 2,300 more wage jobs. Albuquerque and Las Cruces respectively added 3,800 and 800 jobs. Farmington lost 1,800 and Santa Fe 500. The state added a net of 900 jobs, meaning that the 26 rural counties lost 1,400 jobs (2,300 minus 900 = 1,400).
Eight states lost jobs for the period. New Mexico had the lowest growth that was still positive. As has been reported, New Mexico led the nation with a 6.7% unemployment rate.
The Department of Workforce Solutions released the January job report yesterday. The new numbers are not seasonally adjusted.
Monthly job performance usually gets little attention due to seasonal changes. The year-over-year performance indicates the trend.
From December 2016 to January 2017, the state lost 19,400 jobs, 1,300 more than the 18,800 dropped from December 2015 to January 2016. For the year just past, the state’s 900-job increase represents a slight reversal from the 1,800 jobs lost between January 2015 and January 2016.
Mining gained 200 jobs between December 2016 to January 2017. Finance and wholesale trade show no change. Every other sector lost, “led” by retail trade with post-holiday layoffs causing a 3,900-job decline. Professional and business services was the largest other private sector loser, down 1,200 jobs.
State government education was also down 3,900 jobs for the month, presumably also holiday related. Local government education—the public schools—dropped 3,000 jobs. For the year, government employment increased in Albuquerque, led by 300 more feds, and showed modest losses in Santa Fe, Las Cruces and Farmington. Translated, the rural counties took the main hit.

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