New job numbers show Texas job growth in May

After ten straight interest rate hikes by the U.S. Federal Reserve, the hot jobs market that fueled ‘the great resignation’ may be coming to an end nationally and here in Texas.

New job numbers show the Texas unemployment rate increased in May. For the first time in history, Texas has 15 million civilians who either are or want to be in the workforce.

"Most of you are aware of the storm clouds on the national horizon," said TWC Economist Will Lutz. "But despite a lot of conversation about what will happen to the job market in Texas right now, the data is really strong, particularly our large metro areas."

North Texas saw the number of jobs increase more than 4% over the past year.

"In Dallas-Fort-Worth-Arlington, we are talking about in one year, 167,700. Think about all that would have to happen for jobs to expand by that number," Lutz said.

But the outlook for Texas is not all rosy.

Job seekers look over job opening fliers at the WorkSource exhibit, a collaborative effort by governmental agencies to offer jobs and job training resources at the Greater Los Angeles Career Expo at the Pasadena Convention Center on May 14, 2009 in P

The Texas unemployment rate inched up in May to 4.1%, the highest since February 2022 and higher than the national unemployment rate of 3.7%.

TWC Chairman Bryan Daniel said the unemployment numbers may be driven by an attractive market. 

"10,000 more unemployed this month, but nearly 40,000 more employed people," he said. "I think what we are seeing is people are entering or re-entering the workforce when they haven't been working full time. They are re-evaluating where they are and have a good opportunity to get the job they want."

Some national experts say the slowing job market could be a sign the great resignation is over. That was a term coined when 50 million people quit their job in the two years following the worst part of the pandemic. 

Daniel said if people still want to find a better job in Texas with 600,000, the jobs are still out there. 

"Like the great resignation was, I think it, depends on where you are, what your job is and your appetite for getting other job," he said. "What i am seeing is a great deal of stability in Texas jobs market, employers continue to create jobs."

Hourly earnings for Texas employees increased by $1.27 over the past year.

The industries with the most growth: construction, manufacturing and financial activities.