Texas Unemployment Lowest In Metros And Energy-Focused Areas

The unemployment picture in Texas is substantially better than other states, and the energy sector is a big factor. Areas that are energy-focused fare better than other parts of the state. But large cities are also contributing to better numbers in Texas.

The Texas Workforce Commission says energy-heavy areas such as Midland and Odessa are seeing unemployment rates as low as 3.1 percent. Bankrate.com Washington bureau chief Mark Hamrick says major cities in Texas have unemployment rates below the national and state average. 

"It's great to have the energy sector there, but then you have the dynamic economies of Dallas, Fort Worth and Houston and San Antonio that have their own individual dynamics. So, you know, if you have the right skill set, you're in the driver's seat when it comes to finding a job. But we know that, you know, we're in such a rapidly-changing technology environment these days. You know, we buy a cell phone and two years later it's not just obsolete, it's woefully obsolete." 

Hamrick says the nation's economy has been hit with challenges, including the evaporation of the payroll tax cut and government spending cuts that took effect recently.  Economists are also watching the continued European recession and a slowdown in drilling for natural gas.

Bio photo of Ed Mayberry

Ed Mayberry

Local Anchor, All Things Considered

Ed Mayberry has worked in radio since 1971, with many of those years spent on the rock 'n' roll disc jockey side of the business...