|Trinity Standard - Local News
Stories Added - December 2008
Copyright 2008 - Polk County Publishing Company
Unemployment rate climbs to 6.2%
Trinity Standard - December 2008
TRINITY – Unemployment in Trinity rose for the third time in as many months, jumping to 6.2 percent in October, according to the Texas Workforce Commission.
The October figures – the latest currently available from TWC – means that out of an estimated labor force of 6,036 people, there were 374 county residents looking for work during the month.
The new 6.2 percent figure is up from the revised 5.8 percent jobless rate posted for September. Initially, TWC had listed a 5.9 percent September rate, but reduced that as more data was obtained.
October marked the first time since August 2005 that the local unemployment rate topped the 6.0 mark and was the highest October rate recorded since October 2004’s 6.4 percent figure.
One year ago, the October rate stood at 4.9 percent.
Statewide, October’s actual unemployment rate of 5.4 percent was up from the 5.2 percent figure posted in September. It also was up from the 4.0 percent rate recorded for October 2007.
When seasonal factors are added to the equation, the state’s October unemployment rate was listed at 5.6 percent, which was up from the 5.1 percent rate posted for September. The latest seasonally adjusted rate also was up from the 4.3 percent figure recorded in October 2007.
The actual national unemployment rate for October was listed at 6.1 percent, which was up slightly from the 6.0 percent rate posted in September. However, it was substantially up from the 4.4 rate set one year ago in October 2007.
September’s seasonally adjusted U.S. rate of 6.5 percent was up from the 6.1 percent figure recorded in September and up from the 4.8 percent figure posted in October 2007.
In the report, TWC officials noted that nonagricultural employment grew by 23,000 jobs in October, meaning that Texas employers have added 230,400 jobs over the past 12 months for an annual growth rate of 2.2 percent.
“The combination of Hurricane Ike and adverse national economic trends has resulted in a one-half percent increase in the unemployment rate in Texas for October,” said TWC Chairman Tom Pauken.
“While Texas still has nearly a one percent lower unemployment rate than the rest of the nation, I would expect unemployment rates in Texas to continue to track the national trend upward in the months ahead,” he added.
The increase in the number of unemployed in the Houston and Beaumont Metropolitan Statistical Areas, which were impacted by Hurricane Ike, represent nearly half of the increase in the unemployment reported statewide.
TWC noted that during October, the Professional and Business Services sector gained 12,200 positions, for an industry gain of 62,000 jobs in the past year.
Education and Health Services grew by 3,700 jobs during the month, adding 34,700 positions over the past 12-month period.
“Texas is in a better position than most other states with continued positive job growth,” said TWC Public Commissioner Andres Alcantar.
“However, we must remain diligent throughout the state, strategically connecting workers to job opportunities,” he added.
Also showing an increase in October was the Trade, Transportation and Utilities sector, which added 2,700 jobs. Over the past 12 months, it has grown by 34,300 positions.
Natural Resources and Mining gained 1,600 jobs this month, with 16,500 added since October 2007.
“The Texas unemployment rate rose again this month, but remains far below the national unemployment rate,” said TWC Labor Commissioner Ronny Congleton. “Through TWC and the 28 local workforce development boards, job search assistance and training are available to Texas workers.”
Of the state’s 25 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs), the highest jobless rate was the 8.2 percent figure recorded for the Beaumont-Port Arthur MSA
Next was the McAllen- Edinburg-Mission MSA at 7.7 percent, Brownsville-Harlingen MSA at 7.4 percent; the El Paso MSA at 6.7 percent; and the Tyler MSA at 6.5 percent.
The MSA with the lowest unemployment during the month was the Midland MSA at 3.1 percent, followed by the Odessa MSA at 3.7 percent and the Amarillo and Lubbock MSAs tied at 3.9.
Unemployment rates posted for other East Texas counties include:
COUNTY RATE CHANGE
Anderson 6.3 0.0
Angelina 5.0 +0.2
Cherokee 7.1 +0.6
Grimes 5.7 0.0
Harris 5.3 +0.2
Houston 7.6 +0.3
Jasper 7.2 +0.4
Jefferson 8.5 +1.2
Leon 4.6 -0.1
Liberty 6.6 +0.3
Madison 7.0 +1.8
Montgomery 4.8 +0.1
Nacogdoches 4.8 +0.1
Polk 7.2 +0.4
Sabine 10.6 +1.2
San Augustine 6.8 +0.7
San Jacinto 6.3 -0.1
Shelby 5.2 +0.1
Trinity 6.2 +0.4
Tyler 7.0 +0.2
Walker 5.9 +0.1