EL PASO, TX – During the month of August 2023, Texas border cities such as El Paso, Brownsville, Laredo and McAllen showed slight increases in their annualized unemployment rate, according to figures presented by the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC).
After continued growth during the month of August, Texas once again set records for the number of jobs, number of people employed and size of the civilian labor force.
According to TWC figures, total nonfarm employment increased by 16,700 jobs during the month to reach the highest level in the series for 23 consecutive periods at 13,979,100 jobs.
Since August 2022, Texas employment grew by 402 thousand jobs and continued to outpace the nation in annual employment growth rate.
The number of employed persons increased by 24,300 more over the month, bringing the new record to 14,489,000. The seasonally adjusted Texas civilian labor force grew over the month by another 33,500 people, bringing the total to 15,111,900 and setting another record for the state. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained at 4.1 percent in August, marking the fourth month with that rate.
Leisure and hospitality experienced significant growth during the month with 9,100 jobs added. Other Services added another 5 thousand jobs, while Financial Activities gained 3 thousand 300 jobs.
Over the year, the labor market grew faster in Texas than in the U.S. in industries such as mining and logging and financial activities, which outpaced national growth rates by 3.9 and 3.0 percentage points, respectively. Other Services also grew 2.7 points faster in Texas than nationally during the year.
“Our world-class workforce in Texas has grown by more than 400,000 jobs over the past year, thanks in large part to stimulating job creation by our private sector employers,” said TWC Commissioner representing employers, Aaron Demerson.
The Midland Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) maintained the lowest unemployment rate among Texas MSAs with a non-seasonally adjusted rate of 2.8 percent in August, followed by Amarillo at 3.6 percent, College Station-Bryan at 3.8 percent and Odessa at 3.8 percent.
Abilene, Austin-Round Rock and Lubbock each achieved 3.9 percent through August. The Midland MSA civilian labor force grew the fastest in the state at 5.5 percent in August. The Dallas-Fort Worth labor force grew 4.6 percent, adding more than 195,000 people and accounting for 40 percent of all MSA growth for the year.
El Paso recorded a non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 5.2 last August, up from 4.3 in the same month of 2022. Brownsville had an unemployment rate of 6.0, up from 5.6 a year earlier.
Laredo registered an unemployment rate of 4.4 in August 2023, up from 3.9 the previous year; while McAllen reached 6.8 at the end of the eighth month, up from 6.7 in August 2022.
According to the figures presented, El Paso closed August with a total of 19,700 unemployed people, contrasting with the 15,800 that were registered a year ago; while 361,500 citizens were working this year. In Brownsville, 10,900 people ended August without work, 900 more than in 2022, while 171,700 were employed.
The city of Laredo reported 5,300 unemployed, compared to 4,500 in August 2022, while 114,200 people were working in August 2023; in McAllen, 26,200 citizens were looking for work, 1,500 more than a year ago, while 357,100 people were employed at the end of August 2023.