Unemployment statistics are important no matter which side of the desk you sit on. Job growth and creation affects all of us around the nation. If your region is closing stores , people are losing jobs, construction is down, that affects your business. High unemployment means less patrons with disposable income will be coming into your business. Let’s take a look at the states who are the current leaders in job growth and those who are on the other side of the coin with high unemployment/ jobless claims.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes regular statistics on unemployment claims and job creation. This latest reflects the jobless claims in the months of November and December, 2015. The November study was published on January 7, 2016. The news for December was published on January 26th and reflects no change from November with a national average unemployment rate of 5.0%.
The Good News
There is very good news on unemployment across the nation. Jobless claims went down in 27 states. 66,000 jobs were created in the month of November and in 36 states in December.The states of Florida ,Texas and Virginia led the nation in job creation and this trend continued through December with California adding 60,400 jobs and New Jersey adding 13,300.
North Dakota has the lowest unemployment rate in the U.S. currently with 2.7. This record has been constant for ND throughout the economic recession and recovery. Nebraska follows a close second with only 2.9 and Colorado, Hawaii, Minnesota, and Iowa remained in the 3-4% range for November. Idaho, Kansas, Vermont and Utah dropped within this range in December.
The Not So Good News
Jobs were lost in November, about 15,000 of them. Leading the nation in job losses were Nevada, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin in November and Illinois, Oklahoma and North Dakota, (about 25,000 jobs were lost) in December. New Mexico had the highest unemployment rate for the first time ever with 6.8 percent. Nevada, West Virginia, Mississippi, Louisiana and D.C. were all in the 6-7% range with Puerto Rico topping the list at 12%
Even with the fluctuations, our national average remains constant, and has been trending downward which is good for everyone. Seasonal employment will affect January’s numbers and that will be reflected in the new study that will be coming out in February.
More Good News
Even with the fluctuations, our national average remains constant, and has been trending downward **since the economic recovery began** which is good for everyone. Seasonal employment will affect January’s numbers and that will be reflected in the new study that will be coming out in February.
Economic projections for 2016 look very positive for the growth of the U.S. economy and also for job growth. The Congressional Budget Office projects that the overall economy will grow at the rate of about 3% going forward and increases in hiring will reduce the national unemployment rate from its current rate of 5% to around 4.5% -4.8% by the end of 2017.
Many people have a resolution list for 2016 that includes finding a new job. Now is a great time to do that if you’re trained or certified in nursing (RN), medical and health -service management, or one of the many technology-related industries that will be hiring in 2016. Web and software development, network or systems analysis and management and all areas of systems and networking will be hiring. Sales and marketing managers, financial managers and industrial engineers will also be increasingly in demand. It’s not too late to get that training you need to meet the criteria for these jobs either. Healthcare and tech-related jobs will be the largest growth industries in the next 5-10 years.
If you are an employer in the transportation, food service or automotive industries, the news is good for you as well. These are in the top ten growth industries as far as jobs are concerned. Many of these positions don’t require a college education and some only require vocational training. Mechanics, food service workers, heavy equipment and trucking operators and medical records specialists, medical secretaries and computer user support specialists are going to be in high demand. Employers in these industries are poised to dominate the job market.
(Source: bls.gov, profitconfidential.com, fastcompany.com and ncsl.org)