Economics

Economic Snapshot - November 2019

Job creation in the U.S. was better than expected in October at 128,000, through the overall trend remains lower than in 2018.

Robert Spendlove and Joseph Mayans Nov 7, 2019

United States

The U.S labor market added a better-than-expected 128,000 jobs in October. This came even as the General Motors strike removed 42,000 jobs from the count, and 20,000 temporary Census Bureau workers left the payrolls. Overall job creation, however, is still down from a strong year in 2018. The unemployment rate rose modestly from 3.5 percent to 3.6 percent, as more individuals entered the labor force in search of work. Employment gains were solid across most industries, with education and health services (+635,000), professional and business services (+402,000), and leisure and hospitality (+394,000) adding the largest number of jobs. Only the information (-10,000) and natural resources and mining (-4,000) sectors experienced employment declines over the last 12 months. The overall economy continues to moderate as gross domestic product declined from 2.0 percent in the second quarter to 1.9 percent in the third quarter of this year.

Utah

Utah’s labor market remains one of the best in the nation. In September, the state’s year-over-year employment growth was the third highest of any state at 3 percent. The unemployment rate also declined from 2.8 percent to 2.7 percent, which is the lowest level since 2007. Every major industry added jobs over the past year, with the education and health services (+9,400), professional and business services (+8,400), and manufacturing (+5,500) sectors experiencing the largest employment gains. Over the course of 2019, home price appreciation across the state has slowed, but it still remains one of the highest in the country at 9.1 percent.

Idaho

Idaho’s labor market growth is speeding up. The state’s year-over-year employment growth rose from 2.3 percent in August to 3.1 percent in September - the second highest rate in the nation. The unemployment rate remains well below the national average at 2.9 percent. Idaho added 22,000 jobs over the past year, with the professional and business services (+7,600), education and health services (+4,200), and manufacturing (+3,300) sectors experiencing the largest employment gains. Only the leisure and hospitality (-800) and information (-700) sectors lost jobs year over year. Despite some slowing, home prices in Idaho continue to rise at the fastest rate in the nation. In September, the median home value rose by 13.0 percent from the year before versus 4.8 percent nationally.

Wyoming

Wyoming’s labor market continues to grow, albeit at a slower rate. The state’s year-over-year employment growth sank below the national average in September, shrinking from 1.3 percent in August to 1.2 percent. Wyoming’s unemployment rate also rose above the national average to 3.8 percent in September, up from 3.6 percent in August. Wyoming added 3,300 jobs over the past year, with the trade, transportation, and utilities (+1,900), construction (+1,300), and other services (+1,100) industries creating the most jobs. The natural resources and mining (-1,200), education and health services (-700), and professional and business services (-200) sectors lost the most jobs year over year. Home price growth in Wyoming rose above the national average of 4.8 percent to 6.9 percent in September, a large uptick from 5 percent growth in August.

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