Current data releases as of 21 September 2018
Unemployment rates were lower in 13 states last month, higher in three, and stable in 34 states including Arizona. The August state employment and unemployment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated that unemployment rates varied between 2.1% in Hawaii and 6.7% in Alaska. Arizona’s unemployment rate remained at 4.6% in August.
Arizona job growth accelerated to 3.0% over the year in August. This was far above 1.7% posted for the nation. Construction had the most job gains over the year followed closely by professional and business services. Natural resources and mining was the only industry reporting a loss of jobs (100). Arizona’s unemployment rate remained at 4.6% for August according to the September 20 Arizona Office of Economic Opportunity release. Employment growth for Arizona metro areas in August: Lake Havasu City-Kingman 3.6%, Phoenix 3.6%, Tucson 2.6%, Yuma 1.7%, Prescott 1.7%, Flagstaff 1.2%, and Sierra Vista-Douglas 0.0%.
Real GDP increased in most metropolitan areas in 2017 according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis September 18 release. All Arizona metropolitan areas had growth in 2017 with the percent change in real GDP posted at 1.2% for Flagstaff, 3.8% Lake Havasu City-Kingman, 3.4% Phoenix, 4.1% Prescott, 0.6% Sierra Vista-Douglas (a welcome change from negative figures for the last few years), 2.9% Tucson, and 0.3% Yuma. Nationally, changes in real GDP ranged from 12.1% in Odessa, TX to -7.8% in Enid, OK.
The Consumer Price Index increased 0.2% in August, seasonally adjusted. The Bureau of Labor Statistics September 13 release indicated that shelter and energy were the primary reasons for the increase in prices over the month, with gasoline alone posting a 3.0% bump in prices. The index for all items less food and energy increased 0.1%. The annual inflation rate went up 2.7% in August.
Did you know that a higher percentage of people in Arizona work from home? In Arizona, 6.3% of the population worked from home in 2017 compared to 5.2% nationally. This and other information such as real median household income increasing 2.6% in the U.S. between 2016 and 2017 and by 3.4% in Arizona can be found in the latest 2017 American Community Survey (ACS) 1-year estimates released September 13. These data from the Census Bureau provides wide-ranging statistics on the American people for large areas, including data on income, poverty, education, and housing data. Detailed information smaller areas will be available with the release of 5-year estimates in December. Click here for a great interactive map with American Community Survey data for states, metros and congressional districts!