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Economy Watch is a monthly publication examining various economic growth indicators and other factors in the Region. This publication presents a snapshot of current economic conditions in the Sacramento Region and provides comparisons with other selected regions of California and the United States.
Job growth is picking up in the Sacramento Region
The six-county Sacramento Region has seen two straight months of positive annual job growth. Preliminary data show that between May 2011 and 2012, the number of jobs on payrolls in the Region increased by 2,900 equating to 0.3 percent job growth. If the preliminary data is not revised downward, this marks a turning point in the regional economic recovery, which has been trailing the state and nation by about two years. Three of Sacramento's largest sectors are adding jobs on an annual basis. The Educational & Health Services sector continues to top the list, posting 4.0 percent job growth in May 2012 with the majority of the gains confined to health care and social assistance activities. The Trade, Transportation, & Utilities sector saw 1.1 percent job growth as a result of increases in retail trade. Professional & Business Services also experienced positive job growth in May 2012 at 1.4 percent due to improvement in administrative and support services. The gains in these three large sectors were restrained by continued losses in nearly all segments of the public sector as well as annual declines in the Leisure & Hospitality sector—these two sectors posted respective May 2012 job growth of -0.6 percent and -1.1 percent.
Nationally, payroll jobs increased by 1.4 percent over the 12 months ending May 2012, reflecting a 1.8 million-job gain. California posted slightly stronger job growth, 1.5 percent, with an increase of close to 212,000 jobs. Three of Sacramento's neighboring regions posted May 2012 job growth above the statewide and national averages. Employment in the SF Bay Area increased by 2.2 percent in the past 12 months, reflecting nearly 63,000 jobs added to payrolls. The Solano market saw 2.7 percent job growth with an annual gain of 3,200 jobs. Stockton's 4.3 percent job growth ranked it among the strongest in the state in May 2012 (with the Redding, Inland Empire, Santa Cruz, and Hanford-Corcoran markets rounding out the top five). This market added 7,900 jobs between May 2011 and 2012.
Annual Job Growth
Image by: CSER
Major Sector Annual Job Gains and Losses
Image by: CSER
The Sacramento Region's private sector added jobs in the past year
Five of the Sacramento Region's major sectors added jobs over the 12 months ending May 2012. The most significant gains were in the Educational & Health Services sector followed by Trade, Transportation, & Utilities. Only five major sectors shed jobs in the past year compared to 10 at the same point in the previous year. The greatest losses were in the Construction and Government sectors. On a net basis, the Region's private sector activities added 4,300 jobs between May 2011 and 2012, but the public sector's net loss of 1,400 jobs pulled the overall gain down to 2,900. This increase puts total Nonfarm employment in the Sacramento Region at 846,500, which is similar to the levels seen at the same period in the year 2001.
Eight of the state's 11 major sectors added jobs in the past year. Professional & Business Services; Educational & Health Services; and Trade, Transportation, & Utilities posted the most pronounced gains in the state. Manufacturing; Other Services; and Government were the only sectors to shed jobs in California between May 2011 and 2012. The SF Bay Area saw the most gains in Professional & Business Services while only Government and Financial Activities lost jobs in this market. None of Stockton's major sectors experienced annual losses in May 2012—Trade, Transportation, & Utilities added the most jobs. Solano's Government and Other Services sectors posted job declines in the past year while Trade, Transportation, & Utilities saw the greatest gains.
The Center for Strategic Economic Research (CSER) is an economic research and consulting group specializing in applied research and strategy development in the regional economics and economic development fields. www.strategiceconomicresearch.org
CSER is grateful for the support of the Signature Underwriter, UC Davis Health System, and Supporting Underwriters of the Economy Watch, DPR Construction, Grubb & Ellis Company, Los Rios Community College District, Sacramento Municipal Utility District, Sacramento Works and Wells Fargo.