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Aug. 20, 2013

Best and Worst Metros by Job Growth

Washington, D.C.—Julie Zisfein, senior associate and economist with Auction.com Research, says the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) July metro area data shows continued job growth across the nation:

“The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released July metro area employment data and the results were on par with the month prior, as 42 of 52 metros saw payrolls rise in July.  Zooming out, the picture gets more encouraging, as just five metros have seen employment fall over the last three months while only two remain flat; there are only five metros with lower payrolls than six months ago and only Cleveland has seen employment fall from a year ago.

  • Minneapolis continued leading the Midwest region in July, and leads all metros in employment growth over the past three months, with growth of 2.2 percent over that time period. The metro added 13,700 jobs in July and ranks third among metros in growth over the past six months, measuring at 2.1 percent. Minneapolis employment is also up 3.7 percent from a year ago, the fourth highest annual growth rate and evidence of a sustained period of substantial employment growth. Moreover, Minneapolis posted far and away the strongest momentum of any metro, with employment growth accelerating 5.2 percent over the past three months.
  • The D.C. area continues to underperform, as federal fiscal pressures are impairing the local economies. Washington, D.C., shed 300 jobs in July, and is now one of very few metro areas showing longer-term declines as well; D.C. employment has fallen 0.3 percent over the past three months and 0.4 percent over the past six as the sequester continues to take its toll. Suburban Maryland has was one of just 10 major metros that contracted payrolls in July, losing 600 jobs on a seasonally adjusted basis, leaving employment up just 0.3 percent over the past three months. Meanwhile, Northern Virginia has yet to see any spillover from the sequester, as the area has seen jobs grow in five of the past six months, adding 400 jobs most recently in July.
  • Portland has been posting impressive job gains recently, topping the six-month growth chart among major metro areas and adding 4,000 jobs in July, a 0.4 percent jump from the month prior. Portland has seen payrolls grow 1.5 percent over the past three months, 2.2 percent over the past six, and 2.4 percent over the past year. Portland’s economy has certainly picked up momentum over the past three months, adding 4,000 jobs or more in each month since May.
  • Cleveland’s economy remains a disaster. While most of the other long-struggling metros have gained traction on their road to recovery, Cleveland lags behind. Cleveland’s economy has shed jobs in four of the past five months and it is the only major metro still reporting employment declines from a year ago, dropping 0.4 percent since this time last year. Cleveland is also among the biggest losers in the six- and three-month categories, dropping 0.7 percent and 0.1 percent respectively.”
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