Texas' strong job growth to continue, Fed says (Dallas Business Journal)
By Korri Kezar
While Texas already boasts one of the lowest unemployment rates in the nation, good news continues to trickle in for those looking for jobs.
In 2013, the state had the third fastest job growth rate in the nation, and that pace will continue in 2014, reports the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. Despite weaknesses in the manufacturing sector and federal budget cuts last year, employment in industries including oil and gas, leisure and hospitality, professional and business services and construction will continue to grow.
Texas reached its pre-recession job numbers in 2011, well before the nation as a whole. However, in 2013, job expansion in energy, financial, business and health services was weaker across the state. The information services sector was the only area that showed significant, accelerated growth last year.
However, data from the Texas Leading Index forecasts an overall positive job outlook, the Fed’s report said. Demand for the state’s products and services should pick up and analysts suggest a 2.5–3.5 percent employment increase in 2014.
“The energy sector is being supported by strong oil prices,” Dye said. “Natural gas prices firmed up over the winter. Manufacturing, construction and high tech industries are warming up. Also, the service sector will expand to support ongoing strong population growth.”
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