With the exception of construction, other economic indicators support the pattern in employment expansion. Let’s look at the details.
- Between December 2011 and December 2012, Sanpete County’s nonfarm employment grew by 2.8 percent representing an increase of almost 200 net new jobs.
- While most major industries joined in the job creation club, a notable number slipped into job loss territory. The most significant loss occurred in retail trade.
- On the up side, manufacturing added more than 100 new positions, private education/social services contributed 60 jobs and construction increased payrolls by more than 40.
- Following the trend across most of Utah, Sanpete County jobless rate continued to edge downward. In February 2012, the jobless rate measured 7.1 percent—down half a percentage point from February 2011. Currently, the county’s rate is sandwiched between the U.S. average (7.7 percent) and the statewide figure (5.2 percent). Keep in mind that a seasonal component in the labor market will keep the seasonally adjusted rate at a higher-than-average level over time.
- For the most part, 2013 first-time claims for unemployment insurance are running below 2012 levels. On an industry basis, construction, manufacturing, and professional/business services (which include temporary agencies) showed the highest number of new claims.
- Fourth quarter 2012 gross taxable sales increased by a nice moderate 4 percent compared with the same quarter in 2011. Sales in the county have improved steadily for the past seven quarters.
- Construction is the one lone holdout from the recession. Sanpete County home permits dropped 49 percent in 2012. The county did experience some home-building improvement in 2010, but was unable to sustain the trend. On the other hand, while new nonresidential permitting dropped during 2012, nonresidential additions/alterations/repairs popped up by more than 280 percent accounting for almost one-fourth of total permit values. Nevertheless, overall permit values contracted by 22 percent during the year.