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Dallas Fed: Texas Added 4,400 Jobs in May; State Employment Forecast Revised Down to 1.3 Percent for 2016

For immediate release: June 17, 2016

DALLAS—Texas added 4,400 jobs in May, according to seasonally adjusted and benchmarked payroll employment numbers released today by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

The state added a revised 14,500 jobs in April. Year to date, jobs have grown at an annualized pace of 1.1 percent after growing 1.3 percent in 2015. The monthly annualized growth rate in May was 0.4 percent.

Incorporating May’s employment data, the Texas employment forecast stands at 1.3 percent growth for 2016, suggesting 155,700 jobs will be added in Texas this year. This is a downward revision from last month’s 1.5 percent forecast.

“With the weak job growth in May and a dip in the leading index, the forecast suggests only a mild pickup from the 1.1 percent job growth so far this year,” said Keith R. Phillips, Dallas Fed assistant vice president and senior economist. “Much like 2015, employment growth remains strong along the I-35 corridor of Dallas, Austin and San Antonio but is soft in Houston, where jobs have declined modestly so far this year.”

A preliminary estimate suggests that the Dallas Fed’s Texas Leading Index declined in May after two months of strong increases. Moderation in the leading index over the three months through May was centered on a sharp decline in help-wanted advertising.

Unemployment rates fell in seven of nine major Texas metro areas in May, according to seasonally adjusted numbers from the Dallas Fed. The unemployment rates in Austin-Round Rock and Fort Worth-Arlington metro areas were unchanged in May.

The Dallas Fed improves the Bureau of Labor Statistics' (BLS) payroll employment estimates for Texas by incorporating preliminary benchmarks into the data in a more timely manner and by using a two-step seasonal adjustment technique. Texas metropolitan area unemployment rates from the BLS also are seasonally adjusted by the Dallas Fed.

The Dallas Fed releases its Texas employment forecast on a monthly basis in conjunction with the release of monthly Texas employment data. The forecast projects job growth for the calendar year and is estimated as the 12-month change in payroll employment from December to December.

For information on the methodology for the Bank’s Texas employment forecast, visit the Dallas Fed’s website.

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Media contact:
Alex Johnson
Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
Phone: (214) 922-5288
Email: Alexander.Johnson@dal.frb.org