Report: Almost two million new jobs created in the last year
Houston had the highest job growth in 2011 among major U.S. metropolitan areas, followed by Atlanta and Denver, according to a new study, “Job Growth USA,” based on figures from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics. The top job-producing state was North Dakota, followed by West Virginia and Utah.
The study by Arizona State University looked at job growth between January 2011 and January 2012. In that period, the U.S. economy added 1,986,000 non-agricultural jobs, a 1.6 percent increase. The vast majority of those jobs were in the service sector, which created more than twice as many jobs as the goods producing sector.
Houston had a 3.7 percent rate of job growth, which represented 94,700 jobs, among metropolitan area populations of at least a million workers. Atlanta had 3.1 percent growth, representing 68,400 jobs, and Denver had 2.5 percent growth, which represented 29,100 jobs. Others among the top 10 job-producing metro areas include Dallas, Seattle, Cincinnati, Phoenix, Tampa, Pittsburgh, and Riverside, Calif.,.
Among states, North Dakota had 6.3 percent job growth, which represented 23,900 jobs. West Virginia ranked second with 2.6 percent growth, representing 19,200 jobs, and Utah was third with 2.57 percent growth, which represented 30,300 jobs.
Other states among the top 10 include Texas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Georgia, Colorado, Tennessee and Kentucky. Wisconsin had the largest rate of jobs lost among the states, with a 0.7 percent decrease, representing 19,400 non-agricultural jobs lost.
The study ranked cities and states by the percentage of job growth, though some lower-ranked areas actually created more total jobs. The researchers noted, for example, that states like North Dakota, West Virginia and Utah have small populations, so small increases in new jobs can amplify percentage gains.