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Texas Unemployment Rate Falls in July

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Area County Rates Also Drop 

By Will Johnson

Messenger Reporter

EAST TEXAS – According to an Aug. 20 press release from the Texas Workforce Commission, “In July, the seasonally adjusted Texas unemployment rate was 6.2 percent, a decrease of 0.3 percentage points from June 2021. Texas added 80,900 total nonagricultural jobs over the month, making gains in 14 of the last 15 months. Texas added a total of 714,800 jobs since July 2020.”

While the Texas unemployment rate dropped from June to July, it remains higher than the national unemployment rate of 5.4 percent.

Statewide, the highest unemployment level recorded was 10 percent, in the McAllen-Edinburg-Mission Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) areas.

An MSA is defined as a “… free-standing metropolitan area composed of one or more counties.”

The lowest rate, at four percent, was in the Amarillo MSA. The nearest regional MSA is in the Tyler area which came in at 5.3 percent for the month of July.  

Just like the state numbers, the unemployment rates for the counties contiguous to Houston County all showed a decrease over the month-to-month timeframe. 

In Houston County, the unemployment rate for June showed a decline as it went from six percent in June to 5.3 percent in July. The July 2021 unemployment rate was also lower than the July 2020 rate of 6.1 percent.

The unemployment rate in Anderson County also decreased as it went from 6.1 percent in June to 5.5 percent in July. The July 2021 unemployment rate was also lower than the seven percent rate posted in July 2020.

To the south – in Trinity County – the month-to-month rate decreased as it went from 8.5 percent in June to 7.8 percent in July. The July 2021 unemployment rate was significantly lower than the 9.5 percent rate posted in July 2020.

The July unemployment rate in Cherokee County also showed a decrease as it went from 7.5 percent in June to 6.8 percent in July. The July 2021 unemployment rate was also significantly lower than the 9.4 percent rate posted in July 2020.

The largest population center in the immediate area, Angelina County, also saw the unemployment rate drop as it went from 7.8 percent in June to 7.2 percent in July. The July 2021 unemployment rate was significantly lower than the 9.4 percent rate posted in July 2020.

On a month-to-month basis, in Leon County, the statistical data pointed to a decrease from 8.4 percent in June to 7.6 percent in July. The July 2021 unemployment rate was significantly lower than the 9.1 percent rate posted in July 2020.

Madison County also saw a decrease in the unemployment rate as it went from 7.9 percent in June to 7.2 percent in July. The July 2021 unemployment rate was also lower than the 8.8 percent rate posted in July 2020.

Rounding out the area counties, Walker County continued the trend as it saw the unemployment rate go from 7.7 percent in June to 6.9 percent in July. The July 2021 unemployment rate was also lower than the 8.9 percent rate posted in July 2020.

In the aforementioned press release from the Texas Workforce Commission, TWC Chairman Bryan Daniel stated, “Texas has career opportunities for job seekers and the Texas Workforce Commission continues to provide and improve on programs and tools to help people succeed. Our resources, including our focus on ending the middle skills gap in the state, help ensure skilled workers for every Texas employer and upward mobility and career opportunities for all Texans.

In July, according to the TWC media briefing, “The Leisure and Hospitality industry continued to grow, adding 20,600 jobs. Professional and Business Services employment gained 11,500 jobs over the month. The Manufacturing industry added 8,300 positions.”

TWC Commissioner Representing Labor Julian Alvarez added, “Continued job growth across the state is great news for Texans. For those seeking new career opportunities, TWC is here to continue providing resources like job matching services through MyTXCareer.com and WorkInTexas.com, skills training through Metrix Learning, and free hospitality industry certifications through the Restaurant Recovery Initiative.”

Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at wjohnson@messenger-news.com.   

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