Lots of Help Wanted: How the Labor Shortage Is Slowing the Texas Economy

What’s the biggest threat to the rolling Texas economy? Look beyond the tariff talk, trade uncertainties and political conflicts, and focus on the labor shortage. According to employers, it’s already taking a toll, especially in mid-skills jobs. One Texas company said it would lose about $2 million in revenue this year because it can’t find enough workers. Another said there’s a desperate need for more work visas, a nod to the immigrants who helped power Texas’ growth for decades. A third company said it could triple sales with a handful of new skilled staffers.These comments and more were found in the recent Texas business outlook surveys by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. In May, just over 7 in 10 respondents said they were trying to hire — and a whopping 83% of them reported problems finding qualified candidates.“It’s just really hard to find people,” said Greg Brown, president and owner of W.W. Cannon, an 81-year-old Dallas company that distributes material handling and storage equipment. “Every week, we have more work than people to do it. We’re constantly on the hunt for new people and good people.“It’s like having a lid on the business,” Brown added. “It’s holding us down.”  Continue reading...

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