I found a great resource today. The Bureau of Labor Statistics Spokane Washington Site. I found some interesting information. The information is several months behind because it takes time and reporting to keep it up to date but the current information is good through the end of October. June through October the unemployment has dropped over 300 (currently 13,600 people unemployed for Oct 2008) (meaning over 300 people’s status changed from unemployed to some other status). This doesn’t mean they found jobs per-se, since the some of the defining factors for “unemployed”. The employment factor is based merely on those who are willing to work at the current market rate with reasonable skills have jobs.
Granted – I’m sure many of those 1000+ went back to work, it’s just not fair to say we created 1000+ jobs (although I’d like that). As studies have shown, Real Estate Sales & Employment are only linked in the short term, employment in an area has a profound effect on the volatility of an area’s Real Estate Market. We are seeing some of the ramifications of that here in Spokane.
The hardest markets hit (This data is preliminary as of the end of November) were Professional & Business Services down 6.1% in the last 12 months, Leisure & Hospitality down 2.8% over the last 12 months & Natural Resources/Mining/Construction down 2.8% over the last 12 months. The information industry has grown 3% over the last 12 months and the government sector has grown 2.2% in the last 12 months. The two largest employment sectors in Spokane are Trade Transportation & Utilities at 45,000 jobs and Education and Health Services at 37,000 Jobs both of which have dropped .9% and 1.3% respectively.
Tons of information there.