Arizona adds record number of jobs in 2019

The national economy has been expanding for a record number of years now, hitting the ten-year mark just a couple months ago. And with that, the Arizona economy has had trickle-down economic growth of its own. As of late August the public can realize the full, quantified extent of the expansion.  

The Arizona Commerce Authority announced that Arizona concluded Fiscal Year 2019 with record-highs in projected new job creation, wages and capital investments. The ACA collaborated with 105 Arizona-based firms last year, which committed to the creation of 24,422 new jobs, accompanied by $2.6 billion in state capital investment. 

Those new jobs, which substantially eclipse the state’s goal of 16,000 projected jobs, are projected to have an average salary of over $66,000 per year. This represents a 186 percent increase over the state’s current median wage. 

“Companies from all over the world have discovered that there’s no better place than Arizona to expand or scale a business,” said Governor Doug Ducey in a statement. “As a result, Arizona has become a jobs juggernaut and our economy is booming. I’d like to thank the hard-working entrepreneurs and employees for their investments and commitments to our communities, and I’d also like to thank Sandra Watson and her team at the Arizona Commerce Authority for all their efforts.” 

Job growth extends on a national scale, as well. Last month, the U.S. economy added roughly 130,000 nonfarm jobs. The growth of jobs has translated into an extension of a record unemployment rate, which has hovered below four percent for 18 straight months. 

With the tightness of the labor market, wages continue to rise, as well; over the past twelve months, nominal average wages have risen by 3.2 percent. This translates to $1,050 over twelve months for someone who works full-time at the average wage rate, according to White House representative Jack Rauch.  

“This latest jobs report proves that the economy remains strong. Jobs continue to be created across the country, the unemployment rate remains near a 50-year low, and Americans’ paychecks are expanding, signaling real strength in the economy,” Representative Andy Biggs said in a statement. “August was another month of economic progress and success, but there is also more work to be done to complement the pro-growth policies of this administration.”

In the past three months, the U.S. economy has added an average of 156,000 jobs each month – a moderate growth rate compared to the 190,000-per-month average in the eight years since the recession. Nevertheless, this could reflect the tightness of the job market and employers’ inability to find workers that fit their needs.  

The Labor Department also found that the portion of workers between the ages of 25 and 54 seeking work grew to 82.6 percent last month, compared to just 82 percent in July. This is the highest month-to-month increase since 1960, and it represents citizens’ growing optimism about finding jobs, notwithstanding chatter about a potential recession.

Ben Norman

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