Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Supply and Demand in San Antonio

The village of San Antonio, nine miles south of Socorro, has attractions. It is the gateway to the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge and offers a couple of famous burger places—the Owl CafĂ© and the Buckhorn. It also has the San Antonio Crane Family Restaurant.
We found the Crane October 29, a Sunday. The big guys were closed. The Crane is off San Antonio’s beaten track, an accomplishment of some distinction as San Antonio is little more than the beaten track. Thank you Internet.
Judging from the greetings exchanged among our fellow diners around 1 PM the 29th, the Crane is very local. Visitors just don’t see it or don’t search the Internet.
The inside capacity is around 15, outside, maybe 30. The food is very good, the chile, hot. Lunch for the two of us was $23.00.
On the Sunday, there was demand and the Crane had the only supply.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Albuquerque Dominates Jobs Gains

The October issue of the Labor Market Review, the newsletter from the Department of Workforce Solutions, finally appeared at 5:15 PM. (Yes, I was waiting.)
Metro Albuquerque continued to dominate job production with 4,700, or 69%, of the state’s 6,800 new wage jobs between September 2016 and September 2017. For the August-to-August year, the state added 8,600 jobs with 4,200 in Albuquerque.
For the September year, the other three metro areas did a little better with 100 net new jobs. Last month it was zero new jobs.
The percentage growth was 1.2%, September to September, for Albuquerque.
The unemployment rate, as reported last week, was 6.2% in September, a statistically significant drop from 6.8% in September 2017. What didn’t drop, however, was our unemployment rate’s position among the states. We are still third, behind Washington, D.C., at 6.5% and Alaska at 7.2%. The unemployment rate is seasonally adjusted. The wage job numbers that follow are not.
For the month from August to September, the private sector dropped 4,600 jobs statewide while government added 6,600 (2,800 for the state and 4,000 for local government). The gains were nearly all in education. For the year, the picture flipped with 10,200 more private sector jobs and 3,400 fewer government jobs. Local government lost 500 non-education jobs; the state lost 1,800.

Friday, October 20, 2017

NM Adds 6,800 jobs. Unemployment Drop “Significant.”

New Mexico continues to add a few jobs. Not that 6,800 jobs, the number of new wage jobs appearing between September 2016 and September 2017, are “few.” But on the percentage scale of things, 0.8% growth isn’t much.
The Department of Workforce Solutions released the September job summary today.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics, which produces the job numbers, did consider our year-over-year unemployment rate change “statistically significant.” The rate dropped from 6.8% in September 2016 to 6.2% in September 2017. However, our job gain was not significant.
The unemployment rate dropped because employment went up a lot more than the labor force grew. The employment growth, however slight, is good. But the economy isn’t growing enough to draw many people back into the labor force.
The new job production started in construction which rocked with a 7% increase, or 3,000 jobs. Professional and business services added 1,900, followed by leisure and hospitality (tourism) with 1,700. Educational services added 1,500 jobs for the year. Retail contributed 1,400.
The only big loss for the month came from government. State government dropped 2,400 with 600 gone in education. Local government lost 1,100 including 600 in education.
Mining and manufacturing continued to lose, but the numbers were small, 400 in mining and 300 in manufacturing.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Amazon's Second HQ Cities Are Not Abq

In an analysis posted September 8 at marketwatch.com, four screens were applied. The marketwatch finalists are Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boston, Bridgeport, Denver, New York, Provo, Raleigh, Tampa and Washington.
Criterion number one was having one million people in the metro. Albuquerque doesn't, though if you throw in Santa Fe, the combo passes a million.Then there is being business friendly. Marketwatch used a list from wsj.com. It figured 50th was a good place for the cutoff. Albuquerque ranked 92.
The next criteria was “urban or suburban locations with the potential to attract and retain strong technical talent.” The marktwatch screens came from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey. They were "either the largest percentage of professional, management and scientific jobs, or the largest percentage of workers in management, business, science and arts."
According to today's Albuquerque Journal, New Mexico "officials say nearly limitless sunshine, hazard free weather and a diverse population should make the state's competitive." Right. Sure.
Those state "officials" are blowing smoke.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

After A Year's Delay For Software, City of Albuquerque Bills Defunct Business

In a last bureaucratic paroxysm the administration of Albuquerque Mayor Richard Richard Berry dug deeply into the archives and found my micro corporation Progress Publishing Inc. The “company,” long since defunct, is “not in good standing” with the state. It’s been years since I renewed the City of Albuquerque business license. The brochure with the bill says, “1. You are receiving instructions with your City of Albuquerque Business Registration Renewal notice. (That’s nice.) A new on-line system is in place, which caused a delay in sending renewal notices therefore; The City of Albuquerque WILL NOT assess the $10 late fee on your registration renewal 2. If you have renewed your Business Registration after September 2016, please disregard this information”
That suggests that it has taken more than a year to get the software running.
In addition to leaving periods off the above copy, making it a never-ending sentence, the instructions failed to offer instructions about what to do if the previously licensed “firm” is out of business.
My choice is to ignore the bill.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Nothing Much Happening in Albuquerque. September Home Sales Up By Nine.

It takes less than 30 days to sell a home or condo sell in Denver, reports the Wall Street Journal today. Now even mentioning the number slips into the Denver Envy mode that is so useless and popular in Albuquerque. My excuse is that the number is one of those interesting tidbits, however irrelevant.
Denver’s circumstances are different from Albuquerque. Denver is booming. In New Mexico, the bad news is that nothing much positive is happening. The good news is that nothing much bad is happening.
In Albuquerque it took an average of 43 days to sell the 997 single family homes that showed a closed sale during September, reports the Greater Albuquerque Association of Realtors in the September sales report released Wednesday. That was six days faster than during September 2016. A condominium or townhouse took 53 days to sell during September, a three-day increase from September 2016.
Closed sales dropped 95 units, or nine percent, from 1092 in August, a reflection of the seasonal slowing as we head into colder months. Sales were up nine units from 988 in September 2016. Sales peaked in March at 1,030.
It was the same pattern for September’s 985 pending sales, down 195 units, or 17%, from August, but up 128 units, a nice 14.9%, from a year ago.
Prices increased from September 2016. The September median price, $200,000, was up $4,000, or two percent, in a year, but down from $202,825 in August. The average price movement was a $7,070 increase, or 3.1% from September 2016 and a $2,036 decline from $237,532 in August.
Through the first nine months of 2017, the sale of 9,016 single family homes closed in metro Albuquerque, a 6.2% increase from 8,488 in 2016.