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Industrial Analysis

by Nick Dobbins
June 2016

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


Minnesota lost 1,900 jobs (0.1 percent) in May on a seasonally adjusted basis. The small loss came on the heels of the significant gains the state saw in April. While those gains were revised downward after the initial estimates, the state still added 14,300 on the month, making the loss of 1,900 in May look like a minor course correction. The monthly losses came entirely from goods producers (down 4,500 or 1.0 percent with losses in all of the component supersectors), as service providers added 2,600 jobs (0.1 percent). Over the year, employment remained decidedly up in the state, with 27,987 (1.0 percent) more jobs in May of 2016 than in May of 2015. Private employers accounted for 26,176 of those new jobs (up 1.1 percent for the year), while Government employers added 1,811 jobs (0.4 percent). Both Goods-Producing and Service-Providing industry groups added employment, up 2,492 (0.6 percent) and 25,495 (1.0 percent) respectively.

Mining and Logging

Employment in the Mining and Logging supersector was down in May, off by 300 jobs (4.9 percent) on a seasonally adjusted basis. The decline followed two straight months of growth for the supersector, the only such streak since March and April of 2015, and gave back all of the jobs added over those two months. Annually, the supersector lost 1,585 jobs (21.8 percent) from May of 2015.


Employment in Construction was down by 1,900 (1.6 percent) in May, which marks only the second time since October that the supersector lost jobs. Annually, Construction employers added 4,295 jobs (3.6 percent). Specialty Trade Contractors remained the over-the-year driver of growth, adding 2,341 jobs (3.1 percent). However, Heavy and Civil Engineering also saw significant growth, up by 1,716 (9 percent), after having been flat over the year in April estimates.


Manufacturers lost 2,300 jobs (0.7 percent) in May. Durable Goods Manufacturers were responsible for the entirety of the declines, off by 2,800 (1.4 percent), while Non-Durable Goods Manufacturers added 500 jobs (0.4 percent). Over the year, Manufacturers lost 218 jobs (0.1 percent) after being up by 1,714 jobs in April. The May decline was also caused by a dip in Durable Goods Manufacturing employment (down 1,555, 0.8 percent). Transportation Equipment had the biggest losses among the component sectors, off by 635 (5.4 percent) on the year. On the flip side, Non-Durable Goods Manufacturers added 1,337 jobs (1.2 percent) thanks to growth of 2,385 (5.3 percent) in Food Manufacturing.

Trade, Transportation, and Utilities

Employment in Trade, Transportation, and Utilities was down by 800 (0.2 percent) in May. Wholesale Trade had a decent month, adding 1,400 jobs (1.1 percent), but those gains were erased by a loss of 2,100 jobs (0.7 percent) in Retail Trade. Transportation, Warehousing, and Utilities offered no help, losing 100 jobs (0.1 percent). Annually, the supersector added 1,558 jobs (0.3 percent). The component sectors had opposite roles over the year, with Retail Trade adding 2,923 jobs (1.0 percent) and Wholesale Trade losing 1,535 jobs (1.2 percent). Transportation, Warehousing, and Utilities added 170 jobs (0.2 percent) to the supersector's annual gains.


The Information supersector added 200 jobs (0.4 percent) in May. Over the year, employment in the Information supersector lost 1,303 jobs (2.5 percent). Publishing Industries (except Internet) lost 471 jobs (2.4 percent), while Telecommunications lost 291 (2.3 percent). The rest of the losses came from unpublished component sectors, which include Motion Picture and Sound Recording Industries, Broadcasting (except Internet), and Data Processing, Hosting, and Related Services.

Financial Activities

The Financial Activities supersector lost 1,300 jobs (0.7 percent) in May. Real Estate and Rental and Leasing lost 900 jobs (2.2 percent), and Finance and Insurance lost 400 (0.3 percent). Over the year, the supersector added 1,510 jobs (0.8 percent). Real Estate and Rental and Leasing added 558 jobs (1.4 percent), while Finance and Insurance added 952 (0.7 percent). Insurance Carriers by themselves added 1,628 jobs (3.7 percent) although that component sector only accounts for roughly one-quarter of the jobs in the supersector.

Professional and Business Services

Professional and Business Services lost 500 jobs (0.1 percent) in May. The small decline came on the heels of gains of 6,300 and 1,600 jobs, respectively, in the previous two months. Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services lost 500 jobs (0.3 percent), while Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services lost 100 jobs (0.1 percent), and Management of Companies and Enterprises added 100 (0.1 percent). Annually, employment in the Professional and Business Services supersector grew by 2,906 jobs (0.8 percent). Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services added 4,196 jobs (2.9 percent), while Management of Companies and Enterprises lost 841 (1.1 percent). Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services lost 449 jobs (0.3 percent), largely thanks to a notable over-the-year loss of 3,539 jobs (5.8 percent) in Employment Services.

Educational and Health Services

May employment in Educational and Health Services was up by 3,900 jobs (0.7 percent). Educational Services was the primary driver of that growth, adding 3,300 jobs (4.8 percent), although Health Care and Social Assistance also saw some expansion on the month, adding 600 jobs (0.1 percent). Educational and Health Services maintained, and even slightly expanded on, its over-the-year growth, adding 18,533 jobs (3.6 percent) from May 2015 estimates. Educational Services added 6,408 jobs (9.4 percent) on the year. Health Care and Social Assistance added 12,125 jobs (2.7 percent) with most of that growth (10,479 jobs) coming in Ambulatory Health Care Services, which grew by 7.3 percent. Growth in the other component sectors was more modest, with Hospitals adding 1,425 jobs (1.4 percent), Nursing and Residential Care Facilities adding 365 jobs (0.3 percent), and Social Assistance losing employment, down 144 jobs (0.2 percent).

Leisure and Hospitality

Leisure and Hospitality lost 1,000 jobs (0.4 percent) in May, with all of that decline coming from the loss of 1,300 jobs (0.6 percent) in Accommodation and Food Services. Annually, the supersector remains in the black, up 986 jobs (0.4 percent) since 2015. Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation lost 479 jobs (1.1 percent), while Accommodation and Food Services added 1,465 (0.7 percent).

Other Services

Employment in Other Services was down by 600 (0.5 percent) in May. The supersector's over-the-year growth dipped into the red for the first time since 2014, losing 506 jobs (0.4 percent). The annual decline is in large part from a loss of 673 jobs in Religious, Grantmaking, Civic, Professional, and Similar Organizations (down 1.1 percent). Repair and Maintenance added 277 jobs (1.2 percent) while Personal and Laundry Services lost 110 (0.4 percent).


Government employment was up by 2,700 (0.6 percent) in May, with all three levels adding employment. State Government was the biggest contributor, adding 1,300 jobs (1.3 percent). Annually, Government employers added 1,811 jobs (0.4 percent), its strong month pushing the supersector back into the black after dipping into negative over-the-year growth briefly in April. Local Government was the largest contributor to the growth, adding 1,502 jobs (0.5 percent), all of it coming in Educational Services (up 1,657, 1.1 percent).

Seasonally Adjusted Nonfarm Employment (in thousands)
Industry Apr-16 Mar-16 Feb-16
Total Nonfarm 2,888.6 2,890.5 2,876.2
Goods-Producing 442.7 447.2 444.1
Mining and Logging 5.8 6.1 6.0
Construction 120.6 122.5 121.2
Manufacturing 316.3 318.6 316.9
Service-Providing 2,445.9 2,443.3 2,432.1
Trade, Transportation, and Utilities 527.8 528.6 526.4
Information 50.0 49.8 50.1
Financial Activities 183.1 184.4 184.2
Professional and Business Services 361.4 361.9 355.6
Educational and Health Services 526.9 523.0 522.0
Leisure and Hospitality 260.5 261.5 260.0
Other Services 114.1 114.7 114.3
Government 422.1 419.4 419.5
Source: Department of Employment And Economic Development, Current Employment Statistics, 2016

bar graph-Minnesota Employment Growth, May 2015 to May 2016

*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.

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