Comptroller’s Weekly Economic Outlook
Updated February 5, 2016
Over the past year, Texas added jobs in 9 of the 11 major industries, including professional and business services, trade, transportation and utilities, leisure and hospitality, education and health services, construction, government, financial activities, information, and other services. Pre-recession Texas employment peaked at 10,639,900 in August 2008, a level that was surpassed in November 2011, and by November 2015 Texas added an additional 1,242,700 jobs. . The U.S. recovered all recession-hit jobs by April 2014 and by December 2015 added an additional 4,877,000 jobs.
Texas and the nation returned to economic growth in 2010, 2011, and 2012. In calendar 2014, Texas real gross domestic product grew by 5.2 percent, compared with 2.39 percent for the U.S.
- The U.S. added 151,000 nonfarm jobs in January 2015 and the unemployment rate was 4.9 percent. Between January 2016 and January 2015, U.S. total nonfarm employment increased 1.9 percent.
- Texas total nonfarm employment increased by 26,531 jobs during December 2015. Between December 2014 and December 2015, Texas total nonfarm employment increased by 166,900 jobs or 1.4 percent.
- The Texas unemployment rate was 4.7 percent for December 2015, above the 4.6 percent rate in December 2014.
- The Texas unemployment rate has been at or below the national rate for 108 consecutive months
- A total of 7,243 building permits for single-family homes were issued in December 2015, 7.58 percent less than in December 2014. In the 12 months ending in December 2015, a total of 100,244 permits were issued, 0.45 percent more than in the previous year.
- There were 6,822 multi-family building permits issued in December 2015, 5 percent less than in December 2014. During the 12 months ending in December 2015, a total of 68,949 permits were issued, 4.18 percent more than in the previous year.
- In December 2015, there were 24,491 sales of existing single-family homes, 4.72 percent more than in December 2014. During the 12 months ending in December 2015, a total of 295,355 existing single-family homes were sold, 3.4 percent more than in the previous year.
- The U.S. consumer confidence index was 98.1 in January 2016, up 1.87 percent from December 2015, and 5.49 percent lower than one year ago.
- The Texas region's consumer confidence index was 117.9 in January 2016, up 16.62 percent from December 2015, and 1.11 percent higher than one year ago.
- Oil and natural gas production tax collections for the first five months of fiscal 2016 were 48 percent lower than collections during the same period in 2015.
- NYMEX Crude oil futures reached a settle price of $33.62 on January 29, 2016. The average crude oil futures settle price was $31.78 for January 2016.
- NYMEX Natural gas futures reached a settle price of $2.298 on January 29, 2016. The average natural gas settle price was $2.23 January 2016.
- Total state sales tax collections for January 2016 were 4.0 percent lower than in January 2015.
- For fiscal 2016 through January 2016, total state sales tax collections were 2.5 percent below the same period in 2015.
- Texas motor vehicle sales and rental tax collections for December 2015 were up 5.1 percent from December 2014.