The Regional Economic Studies Institute (RESI) at Towson University is the source for the latest data and analysis on Maryland’s economy. Each month, RESI Chief Economist Dr. Daraius Irani provides an analysis of the latest Maryland unemployment numbers. His analysis ensures business leaders have key information needed to determine how Maryland’s economic status impacts their organization.
For years, RESI has provided monthly updates on the state of Maryland’s economy. Earlier this year, we updated our monthly report to include Maryland’s neighbors in the Mid-Atlantic Region to give you context for the changes to our economy. This month, we are proud to showcase our next step in keeping you as informed as possible about our regional economy: the Mid-Atlantic Regional Employment Workbook. This interactive dashboard allows you to view how the regional economy is changing for 29 different industries.
To use the dashboard, select a sector of the economy that interests you from the dropdown at the top. When you change the sector of interest, the map and five line graphs will update to reflect historical data for that industry. Want to know how employment changed in the sector last month? Hover over each state in the map for percentage changes. Or hover over the line graphs to get more detailed information on the number of employees each month since January 2016 by state.
As you can see from the dashboard, Maryland’s economy had a rough October, as total employment declined by 5,500 jobs. While employment declined, the unemployment rate remained constant at 3.8 percent. Maryland continues to have a lower unemployment rate than the Mid-Atlantic Region (Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Delaware, and Washington DC as a whole; 4.2 percent of the region’s labor force was unemployed in October.
While Maryland gained 900 Government jobs, it lost 6,400 jobs in the private sector. Job losses were spread across many industries. The Trade, Transportation, and Utilities sector was hit the hardest, losing 3,200 jobs in October. This sector did the worst in our neighboring states as well, with employment dropping by 6,300 in the other Mid-Atlantic states. The industry with the second most jobs lost was Professional and Business Services, which lost 2,500 jobs. In contrast, Maryland’s neighbors gained 6,100 jobs in the well-paying industry last month. While declines are cause for concern, Maryland’s current employment in Professional and Business Services is over 18,000 jobs more than in October 2016. Over the last year, this sector has grown at twice the statewide average.
In addition to Government, Maryland’s economy did have some bright spots last month, notably in Education and Health Services. Similar to last month, this sector led the way in terms of job gains. In fact, Maryland gained nearly as many jobs as in all of the other Mid-Atlantic states combined (1,500 jobs in Maryland compared to 1,700 jobs across the rest of the region). Other bright spots last month included Maryland’s Manufacturing and Mining, Logging, and Construction sectors. Combined, the two sectors added 700 jobs. Maryland’s economy has seen strong growth lately, so hopefully the slowdown last month is temporary, and employment picks up again in time for the winter holidays.
To stay up to date on what’s happening in Maryland’s economy, watch our blog page for more information.