Although the nation is quite concerned about the possibility of a recession and despite the fact that many are struggling to keep or to find a job, the city of Austin appears to be doing white well. In fact, according to a story published by Daily Texas Online, the overall availability of jobs in the Austin-Round Rock area has actually increased by 16,800 since last May.
While the increase in employment opportunities is down when compared to the growth seen from May 2006 to May 2006 – which saw a 38,700 job increase – it is still encouraging to see that growth has taken place over the past year as well.
In all, Travis County has seen an increase in employment opportunities each month. According to the Texas Labor Market Review, the county has seen a growth of 2.2% for the year. While, Austin has seen a 0.4% increase in its unemployment rate in May, the unemployment rate is still less than what the city faced in May of 2004.
“A 0.4 percent unemployment jump is really not all that significant,” said Weston Stythoff, who is a spokesman for WorkSource Solutions, which is a local employment service. “If you saw a rise over a course of three or four months, then you might want to start sounding the alarm.”
In addition, the city is still only looking at a 3.7% unemployment rate, a rate that is still quite encouraging.
“Whenever it is around that 4 percent market, you’re doing great,” continued Stythoff. “It’s when you start to climb around the 5, 6, 7 percent mark you can start to worry. There’s no reason to think it is going to have any significant downturn. Most of the growths we’re projecting to continue in Texas and Austin have so far proven to outpace the national trends.”
One of the many reasons Austin continues to enjoy greater stability in terms of employment is the fact that the city provides housing to the state government as well as a university.“The fact that we have the college and government sectors here means that it is always going to have that stable base for employment," said Stythoff.