Industrial Analysis

by Dave Senf 
November 2013

Monthly analysis is based on seasonally adjusted employment data.
Yearly analysis is based on unadjusted employment data.
*

Overview

Employment increased by 9,900 in October 2013, offsetting the September 2013 decrease of 8,700. Private Sector results were positive with seven sectors reporting gains and only three recording declining employment. Private Sector employment increased 10,300 with the gains split between Private Goods Producing, which added 5,200 jobs, and Private Service Providing, which added 5,100. The Private Goods Producing job gain was the highest since February. Manufacturing employment jumped 1.3 percent (3,900 jobs), its best monthly gain in more than 20 years. Construction climbed 1.2 percent (1,200), and Educational and Health Services gained 1.1 percent (5,200). Other Services fell 0.7 percent (800), and Professional and Business Services fell 0.2 percent (1,100). Public Sector employment was off 400 jobs with Federal Government down 100 jobs and State Government down 300 jobs. Employment growth has alternated between positive and negative nearly every month of this year. In August total employment finally managed to surpass February 2008’s peak. October’s increase more than offset September’s decline, pushing employment to another post-recession high. 

Mining and Logging

Employment increased for the second straight month (1.3 percent, 100 numerically). Employment in the industry is up 5.5 percent since January and has reached its highest level since 2001.

Construction

Construction increases of 1,200 (1.2 percent), seasonally adjusted, were more consistent with the multiple reports of the industry’s recovery. Employment in the industry is up 11,700 since the recessionary trough in May 2010 but still way below the housing boom peak of 132,000 reached in February 2006. Unadjusted data suggest that Residential Building Construction hiring is outperforming Heavy and Civil Engineering Construction and Specialty Trade Contractors.

Manufacturing

Manufacturing employment spiked to 3,900 (1.3 percent) over the month. The spike was the biggest since November 1995. Durable Goods Manufacturing climbed 1,400 (0.7 percent), while Non-Durable Goods Manufacturing jumped 2,500 (2.3 percent). That is the largest monthly gain for the industry in 23 years. Non-Durable Goods Manufacturing employment has increased for two months in a row now after having declined seven straight months between February and August.

Trade, Transportation, and Utilities

With a moderate increase of 800 jobs Trade, Transportation, and Utilities saw a 0.2 percent change on a seasonally adjusted basis for October. Over the course of the year most months have seen slight increases with only three months reporting declines since January. Employment is up 1.5 percent (8,000) since the beginning of the year, and all three component industries have added employment during the year. Wholesale Trade has added 2,500 (1.9 percent), Retail Trade has added 3,700 (1.3 percent), and Transportation, Warehousing, and Utilities has added 2,000 (2.1 percent) jobs over the first 10 months of the year.

Information

Information added jobs for the second straight month, but the gain of 100 jobs this month was down from last month’s 500 new hires. Information employment has zigzagged for most of the year, up one month and down the next. The industry has added 600 jobs so far in 2013, an increase of 1.0 percent. Information payrolls have not increased on an average annual basis since 2001. 

Financial Activities

Employment in Financial Activities stumbled for the second straight month, decreasing 200 (0.1 percent) over the month. Financial Activities employment has been climbing since bottoming out in January 2010, but the pace has been uneven.  Payroll numbers appeared to be headed above 180,000 for the first time since April 2007 before tailing off over the last two months. Finance and Insurance employment decreased for the second month in a row shrinking by 800 (0.6 percent). Real Estate and Rental and Leasing employment increased for the first time in three months, adding 600 (1.6 percent). Financial Activities employment growth in 2013 is likely to fall short of last year’s gains. 

Professional and Business Services

Professional and Business Services employment dropped for the fourth straight month, decreasing 600 over the month (0.2 percent). The industry has cut employment by 8,300 over the last four months after having added 14,000 during the first six months of the year. The 1,100 job decrease in Professional and Technical Services employment was partially offset by employment gains in Management of Companies (100) and Administrative and Support Services (400). 

Educational and Health Services

Employment in Educational Services climbed sharply for the third month in a row, jumping 5,200 (1.1 percent). The spike was split between Private Education, up 1,100 (1.7 percent), and Health and Social Assistance, up 4,100 (1.0 percent). Job growth in this industry slowed last year but has accelerated in 2013. 

Leisure and Hospitality

In October employment in Leisure and Hospitality increased 600 (0.2 percent). The industry has added 4,100 workers since the beginning of the year. Payrolls were down 200 (0.1 percent) in Accommodation and Food Services and up 800 (2.0) in Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation last month. Most of the jobs added this year have been in Accommodation and Food Services.

Other Services

Employment in Other Services jumped a combined 2,900 during July and August to push employment above the pre-recession peak, but employment has dropped by 3,500 over the last two months. October’s job loss was 800 (0.7 percent). 

Government

Government employment inched down in October, tailing off 400 (0.1 percent).  Local government payrolls were unchanged from last month while Federal Government employment slipped 100 (0.3 percent), and State Government employment declined 300 (0.3 percent). Public sector employment is up 3,300 over the first ten months of 2013. All of the employment gain has been at the local government level (4,800) since federal government and state government employment are down for the year by 800 and 700 jobs, respectively. 


Seasonally Adjusted Nonfarm Employment
(in thousands)

Oct-13

Sep-13

Aug-13

Total Nonfarm         

2,786.3

2,776.4

2,785.1

Goods-Producing       

410.0

404.8

404.2

 Mining and Logging

7.6

7.5

7.4

 Construction

97.6

96.4

97.3

 Manufacturing        

304.8

300.9

299.5

Service-Providing     

2,376.3

2,371.6

2,380.9

 Trade, Transportation, and Utilities

518.0

517.2

518.2

 Information          

55.2

55.1

54.6

 Financial Activities 

178.8

179.0

179.8

 Professional and Business Services

343.6

344.2

350.9

 Educational and Health Services

495.2

490.0

488.5

 Leisure and Hospitality

251.0

250.4

251.1

 Other Services       

115.8

116.6

119.3

 Government            

418.7

419.1

418.5

Source: Deaprtment of Employment and Economic Development, Current Employment Statistics, 2013.


Graph: MN Employment Growth


* Over-the-year data are not seasonally adjusted because of small changes in seasonal adjustment factors from year to year. Also, there is no seasonality in over-the-year changes.