Saturday, May 20, 2017

Unemployment Rate Remains Nation's Highest

A little job momentum appears. New Mexico added 7,400 wages jobs during the year from April 2016 to April 2017. At 0.9%, the growth approached one percent, a magic number of sorts. The March job growth was revised to 7,400, the Department of Workforce Solutions said yesterday in its news release. The original March figure was 6,800 for year-over-year growth.
What DWS didn’t say was that New Mexico’s unemployment rate remains the nation’s highest at 6.7%, just ahead of Alaska’s 6.6%. NM and Alaska are only states over 6%. Colorado has nation’s lowest at 2.3%.
The especially good news is that mining only lost 500 jobs year over year, well down from the thousands of year over year losses that have plagued the sector since oil prices peaked in mid-2014. National stories repeat that oil companies look at the Permian Basin, our oil Mecca, with gleams in their eyes.
The health care and social assistance part of education and health services (EHS) added 600 jobs, or 0.5%, quite different from 2016 when the EHS sector was the state’s fastest growing with 5,700 new wage jobs, year over year.
Manufacturing took the lead for sector job losses, down 900 jobs, or 3.3%.
State government dropped 1,300 jobs led by 1,400 fewer jobs in state government education, meaning universities. (Other parts of state government apparently added 100 jobs.) Local government education (K-12) dropped 500 jobs.
Leisure and hospitality (L&H) led the gainer sectors with 3,300 more jobs, year-over-year, a nice 3.5 % increase. (L&H) had added jobs for 6.5 years, DWS said. Construction added 2,600 jobs, a six percent increase.

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