Houston #1 metro for 2007 job growth?In case you missed it, the Rockets aren't the only thing in Texas on a tear. Houston and Texas are anchoring the majority of the job growth in the country too, all through the national slowdown of 2007 and now into the almost certain recession of 2008. This is from Skip's Greater Houston Partnership email newsletter:
Wow. Almost a third of the nation's job growth is happening in Texas.It's likely that, when the revised December '06 estimate is released, 12-month job growth for December '07 will exceed 100,000, running about 4.0 percent. The key message from today's TWC estimates: Instead of slowing over the course of '07, job growth in Houston last year appears to have continued unabated, essentially matching the torrid '06 performance.
How does Houston's 3.9 percent job growth for the 12 months ending this January stack up? As usual, Austin-Round Rock leads among the state's major metropolitan areas, up 4.2 percent with a gain of 30,500. Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington grew 2.9 percent, adding 83,500 jobs, and San Antonio was up 3.0 percent with a gain of 24,200 jobs. Each of the four majors outperformed the state as a whole, which posted 2.8 percent job growth.
What's been going on in Houston and in Texas contrasts vividly with the experience of most other parts of the country. From January '07 to January '08, the nation as a whole managed a net gain of 977,000 jobs--a meager 0.7 percent increase. Houston alone accounted for 9.8 percent of the nation's net growth, the four large Texas metros together accounted for nearly a quarter of it (23.9 percent), and the entire state of Texas contributed 29.1 percent. Without Texas, nationwide job growth would barely have exceeded 0.5 percent.
And the revised estimates a few days later:
Today, the Texas Workforce Commission released revised monthly estimates of nonfarm payroll employment for April-December 2006 and February-November 2007. They show that job growth in the Houston metropolitan area peaked last June with a 12-month net gain of more than 117,000 jobs, or 4.8 percent, and then slowed to a bit more than 90,000 jobs, or 3.6 percent, by the end of the year."Slowed" is relative. That is still some crazy-strong job growth. I think that makes us the #1 metro in the country for absolute job growth in 2007, but I haven't seen an official list. The usual competitors are DFW, Atlanta, and Phoenix, but I don't think any of them had as good a year as us.
Most of our long-term forecast models assume about 100K/year population growth, and about half that in job growth - so we're running almost twice as fast as that, which implies we may be adding population of around 200K/year. Hard to say how sustainable it is, but there doesn't seem to be any kind of slowdown on the horizon for energy, the Port, or medical. It may be time to accelerate a lot of those long-term infrastructure plans...
Update: Skip at GHP confirms:
Between January '07 and January '08, the Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown Metropolitan Statistical Area gained more jobs than any other U.S. metropolitan area and added jobs at a faster rate than any other major metropolitan area, according to estimates published today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Houston accounted for more than 10 percent of the nation's net job growth over that period. Texas' four major metropolitan areas--Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin--together accounted for nearly 25 percent of the nation's job growth.
For more, click http://www.houston.org/blackfenders/10AW001.pdf. For the complete BLS report, with data on all metropolitan areas, click http://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/metro.pdf.