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Photograph By MARK MONTEMAYOR

Featured, from left: Edinburg Mayor Richard García; Congresman Rubén Hinojosa, D-Mercedes; Texas Secretary of State Carlos Cascos; Mario Lizcano, Director of Corporate Affairs, Doctors Hospital at Renaissance; Rep. R.D. “Bobby” Guerra, D-McAllen; and Rep. Terry Canales, D-Edinburg. The delegation was present at the Edinburg Conference Center at Renaissance on Thursday, January 21, 2016, for the public affairs luncheon sponsored by the Edinburg Chamber of Commerce and the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation.

Photograph By MARK MONTEMAYOR

Edinburg posted the second-lowest unemployment figure among the Valley’s major communities for the month of December 2015, coming in at 4.7 percent, with McAllen posting the best figure at 4.4 percent, the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation has announced. For the year, Edinburg registered the lowest monthly unemployment rates in the Valley three times, and generated the second-lowest unemployment figures in the Valley nine times. The unemployment rate is a key indicator of the strength of the local economy. The EEDC, of which Agustín García, Jr. is Executive Director, is the jobs-creation arm of the Edinburg Mayor and Edinburg City Council. The EEDC Board of Directors is comprised of Mark Iglesias as President, Harvey Rodríguez as Vice President, Ellie M. Torres as Secretary/Treasurer, and Mayor Richard García and Richard Ruppert as Members. Richard García and Agustín García, Jr. are not related. In addition to Edinburg posting the second-lowest unemployment rate in the Valley for December 2015, Edinburg had the lowest monthly unemployment rate in the Valley in November (4.8 percent), and tied with McAllen for the best showings in October and September (4.9 percent for each month). During the first eight months of 2015, Edinburg’s monthly unemployment rates were within fractions of a percentage of McAllen’s monthly unemployment rates, which were lowest during that period. Also according to the latest data, which was released on Friday, January 22, 2016 by the Texas Workforce Commission, there were 35,717 people employed in Edinburg during the month of December 2015. Edinburg’s latest showing was better than the U.S. unemployment rate for December 2015, which came in at 5 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS14000000). Edinburg’s December 2015 figure of 4.7 percent completes a year-long pattern of positive reports: November (4.8 percent); October (4.9 percent); September (4.9 percent); August (5.1 percent); July (5.4 percent); June (5.1 percent); May (4.8 percent); April (4.6 percent); March (4.8 percent); February (4.8 percent); and January (5.1 percent). Edinburg’s December 2015 unemployment rate of 4.7 percent remained close to the Texas statewide average, which was 4.2 percent in December, 4.5 percent in November, 4.5 percent in October, 4.4 percent in September, 4.4 percent in August, 4.6 percent in July, 4.4 percent in June, 4.1 percent in May, 4 percent in April, 4.2 percent in March, 4.3 percent in February, and 4.6 percent in January, according to Texas Workforce Commission figures. The data represents a decrease of 170 jobs in Edinburg when comparing the employment figures for December 2015 and December 2014. In December 2015, there were 35,717 employed in Edinburg, compared with 35,887 persons employed in Edinburg in December 2014. The December 2015 unemployment rate of 4.7 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 2008. 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).

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Edinburg posted lowest or second-lowest monthly unemployment rates in the Valley throughout 2015, reports Edinburg Economic Development Corporation

By DAVID A. DÍAZ
Legislativemedia@aol.com

Edinburg posted the second-lowest unemployment figure among the Valley’s major communities for the month of December 2015, coming in at 4.7 percent, with McAllen posting the best figure at 4.4 percent, the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation has announced.

For the year, Edinburg registered the lowest monthly unemployment rates in the Valley three times, and generated the second-lowest unemployment figures in the Valley nine times.

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

The EEDC, of which Agustín García, Jr. is Executive Director, is the jobs-creation arm of the Edinburg Mayor and Edinburg City Council.

The EEDC Board of Directors is comprised of Mark Iglesias as President, Harvey Rodríguez as Vice President, Ellie M. Torres as Secretary/Treasurer, and Mayor Richard García and Richard Ruppert as Members.

Richard García and Agustín García, Jr. are not related.

In addition to Edinburg posting the second-lowest unemployment rate in the Valley for December 2015, Edinburg had the lowest monthly unemployment rate in the Valley in November (4.8 percent), and tied with McAllen for the best showings in October and September (4.9 percent for each month).

Also during the first eight months of 2015, Edinburg’s monthly unemployment rates were within fractions of a percentage of McAllen’s monthly unemployment rates, which were lowest during that period.

Also according to the latest data, which was released on Friday, January 22, 2016 by the Texas Workforce Commission, there were 35,717 people employed in Edinburg during the month of December 2015.

Edinburg’s latest showing was better than the U.S. unemployment rate for December 2015, which came in at 5 percent, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (http://data.bls.gov/timeseries/LNS14000000).

Edinburg’s December 2015 figure of 4.7 percent completes a year-long pattern of positive reports: November (4.8 percent); October (4.9 percent); September (4.9 percent); August (5.1 percent); July (5.4 percent); June (5.1 percent); May (4.8 percent); April (4.6 percent); March (4.8 percent); February (4.8 percent); and January (5.1 percent).

CITY’S 4.7 PERCENT UNEMPLOYMENT RATE REMAINS CLOSE TO STATE RATE

Edinburg’s December 2015 unemployment rate of 4.7 percent remained close to the Texas statewide average, which was 4.2 percent in December, 4.5 percent in November, 4.5 percent in October, 4.4 percent in September, 4.4 percent in August, 4.6 percent in July, 4.4 percent in June, 4.1 percent in May, 4 percent in April, 4.2 percent in March, 4.3 percent in February, and 4.6 percent in January, according to Texas Workforce Commission figures.

The data represents a decrease of 170 jobs in Edinburg when comparing the employment figures for December 2015 and December 2014. In December 2015, there were 35,717 employed in Edinburg, compared with 35,887 persons employed in Edinburg in December 2014.

The December 2015 unemployment rate of 4.7 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 2008.

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).

Also according to the Texas Workforce Commission, the major cities in the four-county Valley have recorded the following monthly unemployment rates in 2015:

McAllen: December (4.4 percent); November (4.9 percent); October (4.9 percent); September (4.9 percent), August (5.o percent), July (5.2 percent), June (5.0 percent), May (4.6 percent), April (4.5 percent), March (4.7 percent) February (4.7 percent), and January (5.0 percent);

Edinburg: December (4.7 percent); November (4.8 percent); October (4.9 percent); September (4.9 percent), August (5.1 percent), July (5.4 percent), June (5.1 percent), May (4.8 percent), April (4.6 percent), March (4.8 percent), February (4.8 percent), and January (5.1 percent);

Harlingen: December (5.3 percent); November (5.8 percent); October (5.7 percent); September (5.8 percent), August (6.0 percent), July (6.1 percent), June (6.0 percent), May (5.6 percent), April (5.4 percent), March (5.6 percent), February (5.7 percent), and January (6.3 percent);

Mission: December (6.1 percent); November (6.2 percent); October (6.1 percent); September (5.9 percent), August (6.1 percent), July (6.4 percent), June (6.3 percent), May (5.8 percent), April (5.6 percent), March (5.7 percent), February (5.8 percent), and January (6.3 percent);

Weslaco: December (6.8 percent); November (6.8 percent); October (5.9 percent); September (6.5 percent), August (6.5 percent), July (6.4 percent), June (6.0 percent), May (5.8 percent), April (5.7 percent), March (6.0 percent), February (6.4 percent), and January (7.2 percent);

Brownsville: December (6.9 percent); November (7.1 percent); October (6.5 percent); September (6.5 percent), August (6.7 percent), July (6.9 percent), June (6.8 percent), May (6.4 percent), April (6.5 percent), March (7.1 percent), February (7.0 percent), and January (7.8 percent); and

Pharr: December (7.1 percent); November (7.1 percent); (October (6.4 percent); September (6.4 percent), August (6.9 percent), July (7.2 percent), June (7.0 percent), May (6.1 percent), April (6.1 percent), March (6.4 percent), February (6.7 percent), and January (7.5 percent).

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.

ADDITIONAL REGIONAL ECONOMIC STATISTICS

All cities combined in Hidalgo County averaged a 7.8 percent unemployment rate in December 2015, compared to November (8.0 percent); October (7.4 percent), September (7.4 percent), August (7.8 percent), July (8.1 percent), June (7.8 percent), May (7.2 percent), April (7.3 percent), March (7.6 percent), February (7.7 percent), and January (8.3 percent).

All cities combined in Cameron County averaged a 6.9 percent unemployment rate in December 2015, compared to November (7.1 percent); October (6.7 percent), September 2015 (6.6 percent), August (6.8 percent), July (7.0 percent), June (7.0 percent), May (6.6 percent), April (6.7 percent), March (7.1 percent), February (7.2 percent), and January (7.8 percent).

Also for December 2015, there were 309,278 individuals employed in Hidalgo County, while 152,212 persons were employed in Cameron County.

All cities combined in Starr County averaged a 13.6 percent unemployment rate in December 2015, compared with November (13.8 percent); October (12.9 percent), September (12.2 percent), August (13 percent), July (13.4 percent), June (13.3 percent), May (12.4 percent), April (12.7 percent), March (13.5 percent), February (13.4 percent), and January (13.9 percent).

All cities combined in Willacy County averaged a 12.1 percent unemployment rate in December 2015, compared to November (12.8 percent); October (12.7 percent), September (11.6 percent), August (12.5 percent), July (12.9 percent), June (12.6 percent), May (11.9 percent), April (12.2 percent), March (12.2 percent), February (11.1 percent), and January (11.6 percent).

For December 2015, there were 22,335 individuals employed in Starr County, while during the same month, 5,737 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, December 2015:

• Brownsville: 68,955
• McAllen: 60,558
• Edinburg: 35,717
• Mission: 31,257
• Pharr: 27,031
• Harlingen: 22,992
• Weslaco: 13,515

Edinburg 2015 Employment, By Month:

• December 2015: : 35,717
• November 2015: 35,593
• October 2015: 35,541
• September 2015: 35,316
• August 2015: 34,897
• July 2014: 34,834
• June 2015: 35,459
• May 2015: 35,848
• 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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For more information on the Edinburg Economic Development Corporation and the City of Edinburg, please log on to http://edinburgedc.com or to http://www.facebook.com/edinburgedc

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