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Dallas Fed: Texas Adds 20,700 Jobs in September; State Employment Forecast Unchanged at 1.2 Percent for 2016

For Immediate Release: Oct. 21, 2016

DALLAS— Texas added 20,700 jobs in September, according to seasonally adjusted and benchmarked payroll employment numbers released today by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.

The state added a revised 26,000 jobs in August. Year to date, jobs have increased at an annualized pace of 0.9 percent after rising 1.3 percent in 2015. The monthly annualized growth rate in September was 2.1 percent.

Incorporating September employment and new Texas Leading Index data, the Texas Employment Forecast calls for 1.2 percent growth for 2016, suggesting 142,300 jobs will be added in Texas this year. The forecast is unchanged from last month’s estimate.

“Jobs continue to grow after a decline in the first quarter of the year,” said Keith R. Phillips, Dallas Fed assistant vice president and senior economist. “The recent momentum in jobs and the slight gains in the Texas Leading Index suggest Texas will continue to grow at a pace of about 2.1 percent in the fourth quarter.”

The majority of the components of the Texas Leading Index increased over the three months ending in September. The U.S. leading index, stock prices of Texas companies and permits to drill oil and gas wells increased. Meanwhile, the value of the dollar and new claims for unemployment insurance declined. All of these factors contributed positively to the index.

“Overall, broad indicators of the Texas economy continue to point toward moderate growth,” said Phillips. “With the stabilization of the energy sector in the second and third quarters and continued growth in the service sectors, such as health care and leisure and hospitality, jobs in the Texas economy are likely to continue to grow at a moderate pace in the months ahead.”

Unemployment rates rose in five of nine major Texas metro areas in September, according to seasonally adjusted numbers from the Dallas Fed. The unemployment rates in El Paso and Fort Worth–Arlington fell slightly, while rates in Laredo and San Antonio–New Braunfels were flat.

The Dallas Fed improves 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:
Jennifer Chamberlain
Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
Phone: (214) 922-6748
E-mail: jennifer.chamberlain@dal.frb.org