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Metro Houston added 4,800 jobs in August, according to data released today by the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC). That was somewhat weaker than expected. In a healthy economy, Houston would add 6,000 to 10,000 jobs in August. The shortfall this year can mostly be attributed to the surge in the Delta variant and its impact on leisure and hospitality sector (arts, entertainment, hotels restaurants and bars) which shed 4,900 jobs in August. The losses in public education were also somewhat larger than expected. The sector typical sheds another 3,000 to 4,000 jobs in August. This year, it shed 6,600, presumably the result of educators deciding not to return to the campus during the pandemic.
On the bright side, three sectors that have struggled since prior to the pandemic added jobs—energy (1,400), construction (2,100) and manufacturing (1,500). As a group, they remain 64,800 jobs below February ’20 employment levels. Two other bright spots, professional and business services added 5,500 jobs, another sign Houston’s services sector continues to recover. Educational services added 3,000 jobs as students and teachers in private schools returned to campus.
Patrick Jankowski, CERP
Senior Vice President, Research
Metro Houston added 4,800 jobs in August
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