COLLEGE STATION – Texas’ initial jobless claims decreased for the third straight week to 30,700 the week ending Aug. 7.
About 5.44 million unemployment claims have been filed since March 21, 2020, according to U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) data.
Continuing unemployment claims decreased to 178,000 the week ending July 31.
U.S. job openings reached 10.1 million in June, the highest level of openings since the statistic started being calculated in December 2000. Based on Center projections, Texas job openings could have risen to around 800,000 during June.
Job openings are greater than the number of unemployed for a second straight month. The last time this occurred was from March 2018 to February 2020.
“While the economy is still short of pre-COVID-19 employment levels, it is not due to insufficient labor demand,” said Dr. Luis Torres, a research economist for the Texas Real Estate Research Center.
Last week, U.S. initial claims decreased for the third straight week to 374,800, bringing the 73-week total to 86.9 million.
Fewer people in Houston, San Antonio, and Texas’ border metros filed new unemployment claims the week ending July 31. Dallas-Fort Worth registered an increase in initial claims while Austin saw practically no change.
Using data from the DOL and the Employment and Training Administration, the Center has estimated unemployment claims for Texas’ major and border metros since March 21, 2020:
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, 1.28 million claims;
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, 1.24 million claims;
San Antonio-New Braunfels, 375,600 claims;
Austin-Round Rock, 316,300 claims;
McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, 152,000 claims;
El Paso, 128,200 claims;
Brownsville-Harlingen, 66,500 claims; and
Laredo, 37,300 claims.
Administrative/support/waste management/remediation services registered the highest number of initial claims the week ending July 31. The sector was followed by healthcare and social assistance, retail trade, and construction.
The Texas Real Estate Research Center has a wealth of economic information online for free.