Payrolls, Wages Up. Austin Especially.

Scott Francis
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So much for that slowdown.

First, auto sales are running at a 17million+ annual clip for May. “Sales of cars and light trucks at an annualized rate reached 17.71 million in May, the strongest level since 2005.”

Next, the jobs report came out. 280,000 new jobs in May, and April was revised up to 221,000 (March was also revised upward).

Unemployment crept up to 5.5% – because more people re-entered the workforce (a good thing).  And hourly earnings were up .3% – another good sign for labor.

“This only reinforces the view that the economy is a lot healthier than the GDP data imply,” said Joe LaVorgna, chief U.S. economist at Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. in New York, whose projection for a 275,000 gain was among the closest in the Bloomberg survey. “I’m pretty confident the unemployment rate will go back down again soon.”

It looks like Texas and Austin did well also.

“The Texas unemployment rate in April declined by two-tenths of a percentage point, to 4.0 percent,” the TWC said. “This was the lowest April unemployment rate since 2008. […]”

Austin fared better than Texas though – Texas added 1200 jobs in April, and Austin added more than that:

In the Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), the job figures continue to be a bit better than most other parts of the state. Austin’s MSA stands with an unemployment rate of 3.0 percent, with a rate of 2.6 percent in the City of Austin itself. Travis County posted an unemployment rate of 2.9 percent.

In Austin, government was the only employment category with a drop over the last month, shedding 200 jobs. Professional and business services led the way in job increases, adding 3,200 new jobs for the month, a 2.1 percent increase, and 5,800 jobs over the past 12 months (3.9 percent growth).

While BP3 only added one employee in May, we’ve already added a few in June…  It feels like the momentum continues in Texas, but increasingly driven by the non-oil parts of the economy.

Signs of that health in the Kauffman Index, that puts Austin #1 in the national startup index.  And as an anecdotal exclamation point to that, TabbedOut just raised $21M to expand.

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