Texas unemployment rate unchanged, job growth holds steady

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

February marks the 106th consecutive month of annual nonfarm employment in the state of Texas, the Texas Workforce Commission announced Friday.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for Texas held steady at 3.8 percent, tied for 26th in the nation with Arkansas, Connecticut and Montana, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The national unemployment rate is also 3.8 percent. 

“Adding 15,100 jobs in February, Texas’ private-sector employers continue to drive our economy and our state’s robust and competitive growth,” TWC Chair and Commissioner Representing Employers Ruth R Hughs said in a release. “Texas is an exceptional state for industry and business leaders to attract and retain highly-skilled workers.”

The Austin-Round Rock Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA)'s unemployment rate dropped from 3.3 percent in January to 3 percent in February, and from 3.1 percent in February 2018. The Midland MSA recorded the lowest unemployment rate in the state at 2.2 percent, followed by the Odessa MSA at 2.7 percent.

The MSA with the highest unemployment rate in the state is the McAllen-Edinburg-Mission MSA at 7.1 percent, almost 4 percent higher than the state. All MSA percentages have not been seasonally adjusted.

The Leisure and Hospitality industry added 5,500 jobs in February, the most of the major Texas industries, and marking the 103rd consecutive month of over-the-year growth since August 2010. The Mining and Loggin industry reported 1,100 jobs lost since January, but has added 19,900 jobs since last year, the highest growth in a year at 8.4 percent.

“Our state’s constant job growth, high demand industries, and low unemployment rate make Texas one of the most attractive states in the nation,” TWC Commissioner Representing the Public Robert D. Thomas said. “As we continue to grow as a state, we must invest in guaranteeing all Texans access to opportunities regardless of their backgrounds.”

The Texas Workforce Commission releases jobs numbers every month, detailing each metropolitan statistical area and major industry's growth across the state.