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Industrial Analysis

by Nick Dobbins
October 2019

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


Employment in Minnesota was largely flat on a seasonally adjusted basis in September. Employers added 100 jobs (0.0 percent) with a small decline among service providers (down 300, 0.0 percent) outweighed by a slightly larger increase in goods producer (up 400, 0.1 percent). On the year the state added 4,989 jobs (0.2 percent). Private sector employers brought most of the growth, adding 4,427 jobs (0.2 percent) while government employers added 562 jobs (0.1 percent). Goods producers added 3,610 jobs on the year (0.8 percent), and service providers added 1,379 (0.1 percent).

Mining and Logging

Mining and Logging employment was flat in September, holding at 6,800 jobs. That marked nine of the 10 months in 2019 with employment remaining at that level. On the year the supersector added 31 jobs (0.4 percent).


Construction employers lost 300 jobs (0.2 percent) in September on a seasonally adjusted basis. It was the second consecutive month of losses for the supersector, following three straight months of growth in early summer. Over the year Construction added 5,539 jobs or 4.1 percent. It was the largest proportional over-the-year growth of any supersector in the state. The expansion was driven primarily by the Specialty Trade Contractors component sector which added 5,859 jobs (6.9 percent). Construction of Buildings was up by 585 (2.1 percent), while Heavy and Civil Engineering Construction was off by 905 (4.4 percent).


The Manufacturing supersector added 700 jobs (0.2 percent) in September. Non-Durable Goods employment was up by 600 (0.5 percent) while Durable Goods was up 100 (0.0 percent). On the year the supersector lost 1,960 jobs (0.6 percent), with 0.6 percent declines in both component sectors. Durable Goods lost 1,201 jobs, and Non-Durable Goods was off 759. It was the third consecutive month of over-the-year job losses for Minnesota manufacturers.

Trade, Transportation, and Utilities

Trade, Transportation, and Utilities employers added 2,700 jobs (0.5 percent) in September. All three component sectors contributed to the growth, with Transportation, Warehousing, and Utilities adding 1,200 (1.1 percent), Wholesale Trade adding 1,100 (0.8 percent), and Retail Trade adding 400 (0.1 percent). Over the past year the supersector added 795 jobs (0.1 percent). Growth in Wholesale and Retail Trade (up 652 or 0.5 percent and 911 or 0.3 percent, respectively) was tempered by the loss of 768 jobs (0.7 percent) in Transportation, Warehousing, and Utilities. While the component sector has shown over-the-year losses in every month since November 2018, the 0.7 percent decline is the also the lowest since November’s 0.4 percent.


Employment in the Information supersector was off by 1.7 percent (800 jobs) in September. It was the largest proportional over-the-month job loss of any supersector in the state. Information employers also had the largest proportional over-the-year jobs loss, down by 4.8 percent (2,349 jobs). The supersector, which is comprised primarily of jobs in telecommunications and non-internet publishing industries, has been in a fairly consistent decline since the turn of the century, having reached its peak of 71,500 jobs in June of 2001.

Financial Activities

The Financial Activities supersector added 1,300 jobs (0.7 percent) in September, the largest proportional increase of any supersector in the state. Growth was split between the two component sectors, with Real Estate and Rental and Leasing adding 700 jobs (0.2 percent) and Finance and Insurance adding 600 (0.4 percent). On the year Financial Activities employment was up by 3,531 (1.9 percent), with most of that growth coming from the Finance and Insurance component.

Professional and Business Services

Professional and Business Services employment was down by 900 (0.2 percent) in September, with all of that loss coming in Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services (off 1,400 jobs, 1.1 percent). On the year the supersector lost 4,846 jobs (1.3 percent), with the losses coming from the same component sector.

Educational and Health Services

Educational and Health Services employment was off by 2,400 (0.4 percent) in September. Health Care and Social Assistance lost 1,800 jobs (0.4 percent), its third consecutive month of job losses. On the year the supersector lost 6,139 jobs (1.1 percent). While both components had negative over-the-year growth, Health Care and Social Assistance drove the declines (off 5,545 or 1.2 percent.) The Social Assistance component was down by 3,851 (4 percent), providing most of the job losses while accounting for less than a quarter of the sector’s total employment.

Leisure and Hospitality

Leisure and Hospitality employment was up by 700 (0.3 percent) in September, with growth in both component sectors. Over the year employers in Leisure and Hospitality added 9,439 jobs (3.3 percent). Accommodation and Food Services added 8,489 jobs (3.6 percent) while Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation added 950 (1.9 percent). The supersector has had over-the-year job growth of greater than 1 percent in every month of 2019.

Other Services

Other Services employment was down by 400 (0.1 percent) in September. The supersector has been alternating months of gains and losses since April. Over the year Other Services employment was up by 386 (0.3 percent). A decline of 1,651 jobs (5.8 percent) in Personal and Laundry Services was erased by the gain of 1,778 jobs (2.8 percent) in Religious, Grantmaking, Civic, Professional, and Similar Organizations.


Government employers lost 400 jobs (0.1 percent) in September, with gains at the Local level overcome by losses in State and Federal government employment. On the year the public sector added 562 jobs (0.1 percent), as Local and Federal employers posted positive job growth while State Government employers lost 411 jobs (0.4 percent).

Seasonally Adjusted Nonfarm Employment (in thousands)
Industry Sep-19 Aug-19 Jul-19
Total Nonfarm 2,963.1 2,963.0 2,962.6
Goods-Producing 457.7 457.3 458.3
Mining and Logging 6.8 6.8 6.8
Construction 130.1 130.4 130.5
Manufacturing 320.8 320.1 321.0
Service-Providing 2,505.4 2,505.7 2,504.3
Trade, Transportation, and Utilities 535.3 532.6 532.8
Information 46.7 47.5 47.0
Financial Activities 187.7 186.4 185.5
Professional and Business Services 374.6 375.5 377.7
Educational and Health Services 540.8 543.2 543.6
Leisure and Hospitality 280.7 280.0 277.7
Other Services 113.7 114.2 113.7
Government 425.9 426.3 426.3
Source: Department of Employment and Economic Development, Current Employment Statistics, 2019.

graph- Minnesota Employment Growth, September 2018 to September 2019

*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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