Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Weber County Economic Update

The Wasatch Front North Edges Ever Closer to Full Recovery

By Matt Schroeder

Post-recession economic recoveries are long and arduous processes no matter what, but recessions involving financial crises are historically even slower.  Utah and the Wasatch Front North have been plugging along steadily for the last few years recovering jobs at an average rate of 2 to 3 percent per year and reaching a point where most counties have surpassed pre-recession levels.  Yet economists still talk in terms of recovery rather than in terms of normal economic expansion.  Why is that?  How do we know when the recovery is complete?

There are a variety of indicators that economists look at when determining the relative progress of a recovery.  One important one is the unemployment rate.  When the unemployment rate bottoms-out (i.e. when it stops falling), it may be a sign that labor markets have reached a “natural” or stable state, and thus recovered.  In the Wasatch Front North, the unemployment rate fell 0.6 percentage points from December 2013 to December 2014, indicating that the recovery may not yet be complete, but it continues to edge ever closer.    


Weber County
  • Weber County maintained steady, but relatively lackluster, employment growth of 2.2 percent year-over-year in the third quarter adding 2,076 jobs.  Manufacturing, construction, and professional and business services were the largest contributing industries adding 516, 469, and 487 jobs respectively, while government was a drag on employment growth with losses of 282 jobs since the third quarter last year.
  • The unemployment rate in Weber County fell slightly to 3.9 percent in December 2014, the first time it’s been below 4.0 percent since the third quarter 2008.  The rate has fallen almost 0.7 percentage points since the same time last year, but remains higher than the state unemployment rate of 3.5 percent.
  • The average number of initial unemployment claims filed per week in the fourth quarter of 2014 was 182 claims, about 75 fewer claims than the fourth quarter 2013 weekly average of 257 claims.
  • Although the labor market continues to tighten, average monthly wages are still slow to pick up coming in at 1.7 percent year-over-year growth in the third quarter 2014.  Weber County is in keeping with the average wage growth for the state which was 1.6 percent.  The average monthly wage in the third quarter was $3,103, not too far off from the state average of $3,429. 
  • Most industries have average wages that are comparable to the state level averages, but the wholesale trade and the professional, scientific, and technical services industries in Weber County have average monthly wages that come in well under the state level averages by 23 percent and 27 percent less respectively.
  • Taxable sales in the third quarter reached $960 million in Weber County, for an increase of 6.6 percent over the same quarter last year.  The manufacturing industry and the retail motor vehicles industry were the largest contributors each adding nearly $9 million in taxable sales compared to the third quarter 2013.
  

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Morgan County Economic Update

The Wasatch Front North Edges Ever Closer to Full Recovery

By Matt Schroeder

Post-recession economic recoveries are long and arduous processes no matter what, but recessions involving financial crises are historically even slower.  Utah and the Wasatch Front North have been plugging along steadily for the last few years recovering jobs at an average rate of 2 to 3 percent per year and reaching a point where most counties have surpassed pre-recession levels.  Yet economists still talk in terms of recovery rather than in terms of normal economic expansion.  Why is that?  How do we know when the recovery is complete?

There are a variety of indicators that economists look at when determining the relative progress of a recovery.  One important one is the unemployment rate.  When the unemployment rate bottoms-out (i.e. when it stops falling), it may be a sign that labor markets have reached a “natural” or stable state, and thus recovered.  In the Wasatch Front North, the unemployment rate fell 0.6 percentage points from December 2013 to December 2014, indicating that the recovery may not yet be complete, but it continues to edge ever closer. 

Morgan County
  • Morgan County posted strong 7.2 percent year-over-year payroll job growth in the third quarter of 2014 adding 136 jobs to the economy over the last year and ranking as the second fastest growing county in the state in terms of employment. 
  • The accommodations and food services industry was particularly notable adding 75 jobs, and the professional, scientific, and technical services industry was also a major contributor, adding 50 new employees since the third quarter 2013.
  • December 2014 posted a 3.0 percent unemployment rate for Morgan County.  This is down 0.7 percentage points since December 2013.
  • The average number of initial unemployment claims filed per week in the fourth quarter of 2014 was 3 claims, about 3 fewer claims than the fourth quarter 2013 weekly average of 6 claims.
  • Average monthly wage growth decelerated in the third quarter to 1.2 percent year-over year, after growing 2.7 percent in the second quarter.  At $2,870 per month, the level remains below the state average of $3,429.  Average wages for the accommodations and food services industry, which accounts for more than 10 percent of payroll employment in Morgan County, fell by 24.3 percent year-over-year. 
  • Taxable sales in Morgan County were up a whopping 40 percent year-over-year reaching $25.3 million, after sales of $18.1 million in the same quarter last year.  The manufacturing industry was the largest contributor with $2.4 million in additional sales over the third quarter of 2013.
  

Davis County Economic Update

The Wasatch Front North Edges Ever Closer to Full Recovery

By Matt Schroeder

Post-recession economic recoveries are long and arduous processes no matter what, but recessions involving financial crises are historically even slower.  Utah and the Wasatch Front North have been plugging along steadily for the last few years recovering jobs at an average rate of 2 to 3 percent per year and reaching a point where most counties have surpassed pre-recession levels.  Yet economists still talk in terms of recovery rather than in terms of normal economic expansion.  Why is that?  How do we know when the recovery is complete?

There are a variety of indicators that economists look at when determining the relative progress of a recovery.  One important one is the unemployment rate.  When the unemployment rate bottoms-out (i.e. when it stops falling), it may be a sign that labor markets have reached a “natural” or stable state, and thus recovered.  In the Wasatch Front North, the unemployment rate fell 0.6 percentage points from December 2013 to December 2014, indicating that the recovery may not yet be complete, but it continues to edge ever closer.    

Davis County

  • Year-over-year payroll employment growth in Davis County accelerated to 3.6 percent in the third quarter of 2014 gaining momentum compared to the 3.2 percent growth of the second quarter.  The increase represents 4,030 more jobs compared to the same time last year with the construction industry leading the way adding 775 new jobs since the third quarter 2013.
  • Davis County’s unemployment rate continued on a downward trajectory to 3.3 percent in December.  This is more than a half percentage point drop since December 2013, and is well under the state average unemployment rate of 3.5 percent.
  • The average number of initial unemployment claims filed per week in the fourth quarter of 2014 was 139 claims, about 46 fewer claims than the fourth quarter 2013 weekly average of 185 claims.
  • Average monthly wages picked up to 3.2 percent year-over-year growth in the third quarter and outpaced statewide growth of 1.6 percent after having grown only 0.8 percent in the second quarter of 2014.  Davis County’s average monthly wage came in at $3,300, close to Utah’s average of $3,429.  Wage growth has remained relatively subdued over the course of the recovery, so the uptick is a welcome sign of potential improvement.
  • As employment strengthens and wages start to catch up, the expectation is that consumer and business spending will pick up as well and Davis County is no exception.  Year-over-year change in taxable sales showed strong growth of 8.3 percent in the third quarter, reaching nearly $1.19 billion.
  • The manufacturing industry increased sales by $10.8 million compared to the same quarter last year, and multiple retail industries including motor vehicles, clothing, food and beverages, and building materials were also large contributors with respective sales increases of $8.8, $7.0, $6.1, and $5.5 million.



Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Updated Economic Snapshots

Economic snapshots give you a two-page look at quick facts, labor force, sales, building and unemployment insurance, for each county in Utah, and are updated by each month by DWS Regional Economists.

For the latest economic snapshot for your county, check out the updated files on our website for Davis, Morgan and Weber counties.

Note: refreshing browser may be necessary for current information. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

Utah's Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates

Seasonally adjusted unemployment rates for all Utah counties have been posted online here.

Each month, these rates are posted the Monday following the Unemployment Rate Update for Utah.

For more information about seasonally adjusted rates, read a DWS analysis here.

Next update scheduled for March 9th.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Utah's Employment Situation for December 2014

Utah's Employment Situation for December 2014 has been released on the web.

Find the Current Economic Situation in its entirety here.

For charts and tables, including County Employment, go to the Employment and Unemployment page.

Next update scheduled for March 4th, 2015.


Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Monthly Consumer Price Index (CPI) updated

The Consumer Price Indexes (CPI) program produces monthly data on changes in the prices paid by urban consumers for a representative basket of goods and services.

There is no CPI data specific to Utah, so national data is relied upon for this page.

For monthly and annual CPI data see here.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Local Insights updated on the web

The Winter 2014 issues of Local Insights has been updated on the web.

This edition focuses on wage data for hires. To see more, click here.

To receive a copy of any or all issues, call 801-526-9785

Printed copies expected between January 12th - January 16th.

Friday, December 5, 2014

Weber County Economic Update

Second quarter employment in the Wasatch Front North (WFN) region grew 2.7 percent from 2013 to 2014. The WFN increased employment at almost the same rate as the rest of the state, which grew 2.8 percent over the same period. In total, the region added 5,611 nonfarm payroll jobs year-over-year for a quarterly average of 213,346. Annual growth in the WFN slowed a bit from the 2.8 percent rate in the first quarter of 2014.
  • Second-quarter total nonfarm employment in Weber County increased 2.2 percent year-over-year. Total county employment in the second quarter was 96,963, a 2,050 job increase from the same period in 2013.
  • Private goods-producing employment increased 6.2 percent, or 1,070 jobs, from the second quarter of 2013. Manufacturing added 454 jobs, taking this industry’s employment from 12,361 in 2013 to 12,815 in 2014. Construction’s job total was 5,392 in the second quarter or 582 more jobs than a year earlier.
  • Private service-providing employment added 1,121 jobs, a growth rate of 2 percent from the previous year. The trade/transportation/utilities and educational/healthcare/social services industries increased employment by 534 and 300 jobs, respectively.
  • Government employment shrank 0.7 percent from the second quarter of 2013 to the second quarter of 2014. State and local governments added 55 and 30 positions respectively, while federal government lost a total of 226 jobs (declining 3.4 percent).
  • September’s unemployment rate for Weber County was 4.1 percent. Over the last year, the county unemployment rate has fallen 0.7 percentage points. Weber County was 0.6 percentage points higher than the state average in September.
  • On average, the number of initial unemployment claims filed per week in the second quarter (154) decreased by 16 claims from 2013 to 2014.  
  • Second-quarter taxable sales in the county increased 5.1 percent from 2013 to 2014. In the second quarter of 2014 taxable sales were approximately $913.7 million, which was an increase of approximately $44 million from the previous year.