Thursday, October 22, 2015

Piute County Economic Update

Piute County’s nonfarm job performance went from rags to riches in second quarter 2015. However, the county must produce a consistent level of employment growth in a number of sectors in order to find its way to solid economic ground. Piute County’s jobless rate has edged downward since the beginning of the year and first-time claims for unemployment insurance have held at a low level as summer turned to autumn. Countering the better jobs news, sales continued to contract.

  • Between June 2014 and June 2015, Piute County’s nonfarm employment expanded by more than 12 percent, adding almost 30 positions.
  • Retail trade and local government (including the school district) can take credit for most of the new jobs.
  • The county has avoided net job losses for almost three straight quarters.
  • Piute County’s September 2015 unemployment rate ticked down to 6.0 percent compared to 6.8 percent in September 2014.
  • Despite the decline, the area’s unemployment rate measures higher than both state and national averages.
  • First-time claims remain low in the autumn months suggesting unemployment may continue to contract.
  • Piute County’s average monthly wage has shown only slight improvement over the past year.
  • Gross taxable sales continued to contract in the second quarter of 2015.
  • On a year-to-year basis, sales declined by more than 7 percent.
  • Retail sales improved, but a net reduction in business investment expenditures coupled with a decrease in food service sales and a prior period adjustment kept year-over sales comparisons in negative territory.