Augusta Business Daily

Monday, June 5, 2023

Simon Says: The rise and fall of employment numbers continue for the CSRA

The Bureau of Labor Statistics recently released the employment data for the Augusta Metropolitan Statistical Area for December 2022. Overall, employment increased from 239,600 in December 2021 to 244,800, a gain of 2.2 percent (see graph below).

Two major industry groups saw a decline in employment over the year, education and health services and leisure and hospitality. Education and health services employment was 1.9 percent lower in December 2022 than in December 2021, or 673 jobs.

Leisure and hospitality jobs were 1.5% lower in December 2022 than a year earlier. However, the national employment situation for January showed strong gains in leisure and hospitality, so it will be interesting to see the corresponding data for Augusta when it is released next month.

Professional and business services saw the largest increase in employment, both numerically and in percentage terms. That sector of the economy added over 2,000 jobs over the last year, a 6.5 percent increase. Retail was the other sector that added over a thousand jobs (1,426) for a 4.9 percent increase. The next largest increase in jobs, just under 800, was seen in mining, logging, and construction.

Manufacturing, government, and wholesale trade, each added 300-400 jobs in the last year. Financial activities, transportation, and utilities, about 100 each.

In other economic data news, average weekly earnings are essentially the same as a year ago at $922 per week. After increasing at 10 percent on an annual basis through July, the rate of earnings increase has fallen behind inflation in the last quarter of 2022.

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