Beaumont-Port Arthur unemployment down from a year ago, still highest in Texas

Jobs report

The unemployment rate for the Beaumont-Port Arthur metropolitan area is down from this time a year ago but still tied for highest in Texas.

Unemployment in this area dropped to 6.7 percent in December 2017, down from 7.5 percent in December 2016, according to the jobs report released Friday by the Texas Workforce Commission.

In Beaumont-Port Arthur, the industry seeing the most growth in 2017 was mining, logging and construction with a 5.5 percent increase. And while the trade, transportation and utilities industry saw the largest increase in December (1.3 percent), it was the largest decrease for the year (3.4 percent).

But the unemployment rate here ties the McAllen-Edinburg-Mission metropolitan area as the highest in the state and well above the national 3.9 percent rate.

You can view the Beaumont-Port Arthur jobs report for December 2017 here.

Texas added 306,900 seasonally adjusted nonfarm jobs over the year, including 400 jobs added in December, according to the workforce commission, Annual employment growth for Texas was 2.5 percent in December, marking 92 consecutive months of annual growth.

"Texas ended 2017 with record-level job creation numbers during the fourth quarter, with 10 of 11 industries expanding over the year and an annual gain of 306,900 jobs," said Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) Chairman Andres Alcantar. "TWC looks forward to another year of strong partnerships with innovative Texas employers as they continue to create valuable opportunities for the Texas workforce and contribute to our state's economic success."

Industries adding jobs in December included Leisure and Hospitality, which added 6,800 jobs; Construction added 4,300 jobs; and Information, which added 3,600 jobs, and includes traditional and software publishing, data processing and hosting, and telecommunications companies.

"Private sector employers had a successful year in Texas, adding almost 270,000 jobs since December 2016," said TWC Commissioner Representing Employers Ruth R. Hughs. "This growth is a great illustration of the value and opportunity that employers bring to the Texas economy."

The Amarillo and Midland Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) recorded the month's lowest unemployment rate among Texas MSAs with a non-seasonally adjusted rate of 2.5 percent, followed by the Austin-Round Rock, College Station-Bryan and Lubbock MSAs, which tied for the second lowest with a rate of 2.7 percent. The San Angelo, San Antonio-New Braunfels and Sherman-Denison MSAs also tied for the third lowest rate of 3.0 percent for December.

"The unemployment rate in Texas fell nearly a point over the year 2017, which is great news for workers in the Lone Star State," said TWC Commissioner Representing Labor Julian Alvarez. "Positive economic growth means continued opportunities for the expanding labor force here in Texas."

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