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Carbon County posts employment growth

Carbon County continues to experience expanding employment.

The local area recorded a 4 percent job growth rate in November, indicated the latest data compiled by the Utah Department of Workforce Services. The number of non-farm wage and salaried jobs climbed to 9,138 last month from the 8,788 employment opportunities reported in November 2004.

At the state level, Utah's unemployment rate registered at 4 percent in November, dropping from 5.1 percent joblessness last year. Approximately 49,900 Utahns were unemployed in 2005 compared to 61,000 in November 2004.

Utah's second primary indicator of labor market conditions, the year-over change in the number of non-farm wage and salaried jobs, registered at 3.6 percent statewide last month.

"The Utah economy continues to produce steady employment growth," pointed out Mark Knold, DWS senior economist.

Since November 2004, the United States economy added two million jobs for a growth rate of 1.5 percent. The national employment expansion rate is up from last month's 1.4 percent pace.

During the last month, Utah's economy added approximately 41,200 jobs for a growth rate of 3.6 percent. The state accounted for about 2.1 percent of the employment opportunities created across the U.S. The nationwide unemployment rate remained steady at 5 percent in November.

Construction and professional and business services continued to lead Utah's employment expansion rate last month, noted the department of workforce services.

In addition, trade/transportation/utilities along with education and health services posted strong job gains. All other Utah industries added workers, but at a more modest pace.

Construction added approximately 9,700 jobs statewide. The employment growth has increased steadily to reach 12.8 percent, the highest level reported statewide in 10 years.

Construction's gains were widespread across the state.

Utah's professional and business services sector added 7,800 jobs, but growth rate is slowing although the sector still presents a 5.5 percent expansion rate.

The slowing is not an emerging sign of weakening in the industry, but a reflection of a strengthening year-ago performance, explained the department of workforce services.

Trade/transportation/utilities represent Utah's largest sector, employing nearly 234,000 workers. The industry added approximately 6,800 jobs at locations across the state in the past year, for a growth rate of 3 percent.

Overall employment in Utah fluctuates throughout the year as seasonal activities come into play.

The highest statewide level of employment typically occurs in the last two months of the year, driven by hiring by the retail industry in preparation for holiday spending, noted the department of workforce services.

Job levels generally increase between October and December by 5,500 to 7,000 workers annually, depending upon the strength of the economic climate.

Employment gains in the state's manufacturing sector numbered roughly 1,900 jobs from November 2004 to 2005.

The sector continued to grow, but the slower employment gains suggest moderation within the manufacturing environment, according to the department of workforce services.

In November, Utah recorded employment gains in the durable and nondurable goods areas.

Durable goods job gains were concentrated in fabricated metal products, transportation equipment and furniture.Non-durable employment gains were the largest in chemical production, plastics-rubbers and printing, concluded the department of workforce services.

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