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Houston unemployment rate now lowest in four years

Houston and Texas saw their unemployment rates in November drop to the lowest level seen in four years, the Texas Workforce Commission reported Friday.

Both the Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown metropolitan statistical area and the state reported 5.8 percent unemployment, not seasonally adjusted, down from 6.2 percent in September.

This is the first time those rates were below 6 percent since December 2008 — just as the recession deepened — when the Houston MSA reported 5.5 percent and the state reported 5.7 percent, not adjusted.

A year ago, the Houston area’s non-adjusted rate was 7.3 percent, and the state’s was 7.2 percent.

Additionally, the state’s seasonally adjusted rate of 6.2 percent in November dropped from 6.6 percent in October.

Both the state and Houston area’s rates remain well below the national unemployment rate, which is 7.7 percent seasonally adjusted and 7.4 percent not adjusted.

Texas employers added 22,100 total nonfarm jobs in November, the TWC reported. Of the state’s 11 major industries, 10 grew year-over-year, while eight added jobs within the past month.

Trade, transportation and utilities experienced the most growth of any industry last month, adding 20,600 jobs — its largest monthly gain ever.

Statewide, all MSAs have fallen below 10 percent. The Brownsville-Harlingen area had the highest unemployment rate: 9.7 percent. The Midland area again had the lowest rate, 3 percent. All metropolitan rates are not seasonally adjusted.

Sourced from bizjournals.com