Texas nonfarm employment rose 2.3 percent from February 2007 to February 2008 compared with the less than 1 percent annual growth rate of nonfarm employment for the United States as a whole.

The state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell from 4.5 percent in February 2007 to 4.1 percent in February 2008.

Higher oil prices continue to help the state’s oil and natural gas industry. The state’s mining industry ranked first in job creation, followed by the leisure and hospitality industry, construction, professional and business services, and education and health services industry.

All Texas metro areas except Beaumont–Port Arthur experienced positive February-to-February employment growth rates. Odessa ranked first in job creation followed by Midland, Waco, Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown, and Longview. Midland had the lowest unemployment rate February 2008 followed by Odessa, Amarillo, Lubbock, and College Station–Bryan.

Source: Real Estate Center