DALLAS, Texas (Nexstar) – Texas lost more than 18,000 jobs in February, according to the Federal Reserve in Dallas.
The unemployment rate also increased from January to February, according to the report. In January the unemployment rate was 6.8 percent and 6.9 percent in February.
Despite the decrease, economists say they are still optimistic.
“While jobs declined moderately in February, most high-frequency data for the first half of March show signs of a significant improvement in economic activity,” Keith Phillips, Dallas Fed senior vice president and senior economist said. “February employment was likely impacted by Winter Storm Uri, which may have delayed some new business from opening and temporarily shut down some businesses due to damage from broken pipes or other storm-related repairs. However, March data on staffing levels and hours worked at small businesses, mobility and engagement, and restaurant reservations all show a pickup in activity. As long as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations continue to decline, we should see further strengthening of job growth going forward.”
The Dallas Fed projects about 738,900 jobs will be added in the state this year and employment is projected to be 13.1 million.