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Photograph By RONNIE LARRALDE

Featured, from left: Karen K. Pittman, Branch Manager, International Bancshares Corporation (IBC); Dina Araguz, Area Sales Manager, International Bancshares Corporation (IBC); Letty González, President, Edinburg Chamber of Commerce, and Harvey Rodríguez, Treasurer, Board of Directors, Edinburg Economic Development Corporation, on Wednesday, May 27, at the Edinburg Municipal Auditorium.
Photograph By RONNIE LARRALDE

Edinburg’s unemployment rate for May 2015 was 4.8 percent, representing the fourth consecutive month that the city posted a monthly figure under five percent, with McAllen, at 4.6 percent, being the only other major Valley city to come under five percent, the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation has announced. The EEDC is the jobs-creation arm of the Edinburg Mayor and Edinburg City Council. Edinburg’s unemployment rate, as calculated by the Texas Workforce Commission, was the best showing for the city for that month since May 2008, when it was reported at 4.6 percent by the state agency. Edinburg’s May 2015 unemployment rate of 4.8 percent remained close to the Texas statewide average, which was 4.1 percent for May 2015, four percent for April 2015, 4.2 percent for March 2015, 4.3 percent for February 2015, and 4.6 percent for January 2015, according to Texas Workforce Commission figures. The city’s latest performance also was better than the U.S. unemployment rate for May 2015, which was 5.5 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics. The data represents an increase of 482 jobs in Edinburg when comparing the employment figures for May 2015 and May 2014. In May 2015, there were 35,912 persons employed in Edinburg, compared with 35,430 in May 2014. The May 2015 unemployment rate of 4.8 percent for Edinburg is also better than the annual unemployment rate in Edinburg for 2014, which was 5.8 percent – and that yearly rate was the best 12-month average from January through December since 2005. The unemployment rate is a key indicator of the strength of the local economy. The unemployment rate is the number of persons unemployed, expressed as a percentage of the civilian labor force, according to the Texas Workforce Commission. The civilian labor force is that portion of the population age 16 and older employed or unemployed. To be considered unemployed, a person has to be not working but willing and able to work and actively seeking work. All cities combined in Hidalgo County averaged a 7.2 percent unemployment rate in May 2015, representing improvements from 7.3 percent in April 2015, 7.6 percent in March 2015, 7.7 percent in February 2015 and 8.3 percent in January 2015. All cities combined in Cameron County averaged a 6.6 percent unemployment rate in May 2015, representing improvements from 6.7 percent unemployment rate in April 2015, 7.1 percent in March 2015, 7.2 percent in February 2015 and 7.8 percent in January 2015. Also for May 2015, there were 310,967 individuals employed in Hidalgo County, while 154,484 persons were employed in Cameron County. The Texas Workforce Commission data on all entities in the state, including cities and counties, is available online at: http://www.tracer2.com/cgi/dataanalysis/AreaSelection.asp?tableName=Labforce

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Edinburg’s 2015 unemployment rates remain under five percent for fourth consecutive month

By DAVID A. DÍAZ
Legislativemedia@aol.com

Edinburg’s unemployment rate for May 2015 was 4.8 percent, representing the fourth consecutive month that the city posted a monthly figure under five percent, with McAllen, at 4.6 percent, being the only other major Valley city to come under five percent, the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation has announced.

The EEDC is the jobs-creation arm of the Edinburg Mayor and Edinburg City Council.

Edinburg’s unemployment rate, as calculated by the Texas Workforce Commission, was the best showing for the city for that month since May 2008, when it was reported at 4.6 percent by the state agency.

Among its many duties, the Texas Workforce Commission provides information and analysis on shifts in occupations and industries within the state, including unemployment rates and employment figures, broken down by cities, counties, and regions in Texas, on a monthly basis.

Edinburg’s May 2015 figure of 4.8 percent follows positive showings in April 2015 (4.6 percent), March 2015 (4.8 percent), February 2015 (4.8 percent) and January 2015 (5.1 percent).

Edinburg’s May 2015 unemployment rate of 4.8 percent remained close to the Texas statewide average, which was 4.1 percent for May 2015, four percent for April 2015, 4.2 percent for March 2015, 4.3 percent for February 2015, and 4.6 percent for January 2015, according to Texas Workforce Commission figures.

The city’s latest performance also was better than the U.S. unemployment rate for May 2015, which was 5.5 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS14000000).

The data represents an increase of 482 jobs in Edinburg when comparing the employment figures for May 2015 and May 2014. In May 2015, there were 35,912 persons employed in Edinburg, compared with 35,430 in May 2014.

The May 2015 unemployment rate of 4.8 percent for Edinburg is also better than the annual unemployment rate in Edinburg for 2014, which was 5.8 percent – and that yearly rate was the best 12-month average from January through December since 2005.

Edinburg’s annual unemployment rates since 2005, which is the year in which the state government began preparing those figures using a more accurate formula, according to the Texas Workforce Commission, have registered as follows: 2014 (5.8 percent); 2013 (6.9 percent); 2012 (7.5 percent); 2011 (8.4 percent); 2010 (8.2 percent); 2009 (6.8 percent); 2008 (4.9 percent); 2007 (4.7 percent); 2006 (5.2 percent); and 2005 (4.9 percent).

The Texas Workforce Commission also reported that the four-county Valley’s other major communities continued to show improvements in their monthly unemployment rates.

• McAllen, 4.6 percent (4.5 percent in April, 4.7 percent in March, 4.7 percent in February, 5.0 percent in January);
• Edinburg, 4.8 percent (4.6 percent in April, 4.8 percent in March, 4.8 percent in March, 4.8 percent in February, 5.1 percent in January);
• Harlingen, 5.6 percent (5.4 percent in April, 5.6 percent in March, 5.7 percent in February, 6.3 percent in January);
• Mission, 5.7 percent (5.6 percent in April, 5.7 percent in March, 5.8 percent in February, 6.3 percent in January);
• Weslaco, 5.7 percent (5.7 percent in April, 6.0 percent in March, 6.4 percent in February, 7.2 percent in January);
• Pharr, 6.1 percent (6.1 percent in April, 6.4 percent in March, 6.7 percent in February, 7.5 percent in January); and
• Brownsville, 6.4 percent (6.5 percent in April, 7.1 percent in March, 7.0 percent in February, 7.8 percent in January).

The unemployment rate is a key indicator of the strength of the local economy.

The unemployment rate is the number of persons unemployed, expressed as a percentage of the civilian labor force, according to the Texas Workforce Commission. The civilian labor force is that portion of the population age 16 and older employed or unemployed. To be considered unemployed, a person has to be not working but willing and able to work and actively seeking work.

OTHER KEY REGIONAL, LOCAL ECONOMIC INDICATORS

All cities combined in Hidalgo County averaged a 7.2 percent unemployment rate in May 2015, representing improvements from 7.3 percent in April 2015, 7.6 percent in March 2015, 7.7 percent in February 2015 and 8.3 percent in January 2015.

All cities combined in Cameron County averaged a 6.6 percent unemployment rate in May 2015, representing improvements from 6.7 percent unemployment rate in April 2015, 7.1 percent in March 2015, 7.2 percent in February 2015 and 7.8 percent in January 2015.

Also for May 2015, there were 310,967 individuals employed in Hidalgo County, while 154,484 persons were employed in Cameron County.

All cities combined in Starr County averaged a 12.4 percent unemployment rate in May 2015, which represented improvements from a 12.7 percent unemployment rate in April 2015, 13.5 percent in March 2015, 13.4 percent in February 2015, and 13.9 percent in January 2015.

All cities combined in Willacy County averaged an 11.9 percent unemployment rate in May 2015, compared with 12.2 percent in April 2015, 12.2 percent in March 2015, 11.1 percent in February 2015 and 11.6 percent in January 2015.

For May 2015, there were 22,865 individuals employed in Starr County, while during the same month, 6,537 persons were employed in Willacy County.

More detailed information about the labor market and unemployment rates in Edinburg and neighboring major communities include:

Number of Persons Employed, May 2015:

  • Brownsville: 69,984
  • McAllen: 60,888
  • Edinburg: 35,912
  • Mission: 31,428
  • Pharr: 27,179
  • Harlingen: 23,335
  • Weslaco: 13,589

Edinburg 2015 Employment, By Month:

  • May 2015: 35,912
  • April 2015: 35,538
  • March 2015: 35,600
  • February 2015: 35,497
  • January 2015: 35,554

Edinburg 2014 Employment, By Month:

  • December 2014: 35,887
  • November 2014: 35,922
  • October 2014: 35,793
  • September 2014: 35,192
  • August 2014: 34,691
  • July 2014: 34,600
  • June 2014: 35,246
  • May 2014: 35,430
  • April 2014: 35,374
  • March 2014: 35,194
  • February 2014: 35,043
  • January 2014: 34,896

Edinburg Monthly Unemployment Rates, 2014:

  • December: 4.6 percent
  • November: 5.1 percent
  • October: 5.4 percent
  • September: 5.7 percent
  • August: 6.3 percent
  • July: 6.6 percent
  • June: 6.6 percent
  • May: 5.8 percent
  • April: 5.3 percent
  • March: 5.9 percent
  • February: 6.2 percent
  • January: 6.3 percent

Edinburg Monthly Unemployment Rates, 2013

  • December: 6.1 percent
  • November: 6.3 percent
  • October: 6.9 percent
  • September: 6.9 percent
  • August: 7.2 percent
  • July: 7.5 percent
  • June: 7.6 percent
  • May: 6.9 percent
  • April: 6.4 percent
  • March: 6.8 percent
  • February: 7.1 percent
  • January: 7.2 percent

Because of substantial methodology changes between 2004 and 2005 in estimating city unemployment statistics, Texas city data is not available prior to 2005, according to the Texas Workforce Commission.
Because of substantial methodology changes in geographic areas below the state level, data from 2005 and 2004 or earlier is not considered comparable, the state agency explains.

Effective in March 2015, the TWC also notes that “for all sub-state LAUS estimates, a break in series exists between December 2009 and January 2010 due to a change in methodology used. The use of caution is advised when comparing data from prior to 2010 to that of 2010-present.

The Texas Workforce Commission data on all entities in the state, including cities and counties, is available online at:

http://www.tracer2.com/cgi/dataanalysis/AreaSelection.asp?tableName=Labforce

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The Edinburg Economic Development Corporation is the jobs-creation arm of the Edinburg Mayor and the Edinburg City Council. It’s five-member governing board, which is appointed by the Edinburg City Council, includes Mayor Richard García as President, Mark Iglesias as Vice President, Harvey Rodríguez as Treasurer, Rolando “Ronnie” Guerra, Sr. as Secretary, and Richard W. Ruppert, Member. For more information on the EEDC and the City of Edinburg, please log on to http://www.EdbgCityLimits.com or to http://www.facebook.com/edinburgedc

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