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Harvey Still Affecting Employment In Houston

“4.8% is still a pretty good unemployment rate. Anything below five, we should be pleased with,” Jankowski says.

Basement elevators, Wortham Theater Center (post-Harvey)

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Greater Houston lost 16,000 jobs in September. Houston also continues to lead the state’s major cities in unemployment. But, the news isn’t as bad as it seems.

With unemployment numbers higher than Dallas-Fort Worth, Austin, San Antonio and the national average, the question is why?

“For one thing, Houston’s economy is still lagging those other three metropolitan areas.  San Antonio, Austin and Dallas are creating jobs at a faster rate. Their economies, I hate to say this, are a little bit healthier than Houston’s,” says Patrick Jankowski of the Greater Houston Partnership.

While the unemployment numbers for Houston may not be as good as their contemporaries in state, experts say most of the job loses can be attributed to Harvey. And they have improved. September unemployment is a little better than August and almost a full percent better than this time a year ago.

“4.8% is still a pretty good unemployment rate. Anything below five, we should be pleased with,” Jankowski says.

Overall in the state of Texas, unemployment is at or below what economists consider “full employment” for 39-straight months.

 

 

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