Nonfarm unemployment in Texas dropped to 8.1 percent in March, down slightly from 8.2 in February.
The addition of 37,200 jobs last month makes a total number of new jobs 251,100 since March 2010. The Texas unemployment rate is well below the 8.8 U.S. unemployment rate for March.
"The Professional and Business Services industry led Texas' job growth in March with an increase of 10,800 jobs," said Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) Chairman Tom Pauken. "This industry has shown positive monthly growth for the past year with a total employment increase of 53,800 jobs."
The Texas Workforce Commission released the following information Friday:
Leisure and hospitality employment increased by 9,900 jobs in March for a total of 28,000 positions added over the year; Manufacturing added 4,000 jobs in March for its fourth consecutive month of expansion and a total of 12,100 positions added over the year.
Employment in mining and logging increased for the fifth consecutive month, adding 4,300 jobs in March. The annual growth rate for this industry was more than 15 percent as employers have added 31,100 jobs over the past year.
"More jobs and more Texans working are the bottom lines," said TWC Commissioner Representing Labor Ronny Congleton. "Our labor force, strong and diverse, continues to grow, but our goal is a job for every Texan who wants to work."
Trade, Transportation, and Utilities added 2,300 jobs in March, representing the addition of 33,900 jobs over the year; Construction employment increased in March by 2,200 jobs and has had six consecutive months of annual growth for a total of 34,600 jobs since last year.
"The Texas labor market continues to make positive gains with the addition of jobs and a decline in the unemployment rate," said TWC Commissioner Representing the Public Andres Alcantar. "These job gains occurred across most major industry sectors."
The Midland Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) had the lowest March unemployment rate in the state at 4.6 percent. The Amarillo MSA had the second lowest unemployment rate in March at 5.4 percent, followed by the College Station-Bryan MSA at 5.9 percent (not seasonally adjusted).
Audio downloads from TWC Chairman Tom Pauken on the latest labor market data are available at the following link: http://www.twc.state.tx.us/news/press/2011/praudio11.html.