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For the second straight month, the Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index was relatively unchanged, increasing slightly from 100.63 in June to 100.64 in July. The national index has seen little movement in recent months, essentially remaining flat from May to July. Still trailing employment growth seen in 2014, the index was down 0.46 percent from the previous July. The East North Central region continues as the highest-ranked regional index. Washington maintained its lead among states, and for the 10th straight month, Dallas ranked number one among metro areas for employment growth with an index level surpassing 105.
“The Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index indicates job gains have been steady in 2015 as the July reading of 100.64 is almost identical to May and June, as well as the beginning of the year in January (100.65),” said James Diffley, chief regional economist at IHS.
Stability is apparent this summer, and this year, in contrast to the volatility of the preceding year. Up 0.02 percent in July, the first reading of the third quarter signals consistent job growth. While the national index has remained relatively flat in 2015, the level has been over 100 for nearly four years, since September 2011. Seven of the nine regions increased the rate of employment growth in July.
At 101.84, the East North Central has the highest Index in July. Looking at the 3-month growth rate, Mountain led all regions, increasing 0.54 percent, while the two least populous regions, West North Central and East South Central, decreased 1.33 percent and 0.98 percent respectively. Pacific gained 0.12 percent in July and moved up to the third ranked regional index at 101.43.
State Employment Trend
Washington leads all states with an index level above 103, with Wisconsin, Michigan, and Texas all above 102. According to BLS data, Michigan is adding jobs at a faster pace this year than all states east of the Mississippi. Despite a promising start to 2015, Virginia fell sharply in June, 1.04 percent, and again in July, 0.66 percent. Wisconsin and Tennessee scored the largest one-month gains, increasing 0.51 percent. Tennessee’s index increase aligns well with BLS data that shows Tennessee among the leaders in overall job growth for the second quarter.
Metropolitan Employment Trend
Texas is a tale of two cities. The Dallas index surged over 105, far outdistancing all other metros, while Houston fell below 100 in the midst of oil and gas retrenchment. According to the BLS, total job growth for Texas has fallen from near the top to among the middle of all states. Miami jumped 0.60 percent in July to 101.28, an eight-year high. Washington dropped 0.68 percent and is the only metro with an index below 98.
Note: Analysis is provided for the 20 largest metro areas based on U.S. population.
Launched on April 1, 2014, the monthly index from Paychex, Inc., a leading provider of payroll, human resource, insurance, and benefits outsourcing solutions for small-to medium-sized businesses, and IHS, Inc., a leading global source of critical information and insight, provides analysis of small business employment trends across the U.S.
The index analyzes same-store, year-over-year worker count changes to identify and track small business employment trends using real small business payroll data from the Paychex client base. The index is based on aggregated data from approximately 350,000 small businesses with fewer than 50 workers across the United States, one of the largest sample sizes of any small business index or report in the country, and provides timely, accurate insight into national, regional, state, and metro employment activity. The index uses a base year of 2004, a period of expansion before the start of the economic downturn. When the index trends up it is a sign of a strengthening job market, and when it trends down it is a sign of a slowdown.
For more information about the Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index, please visit the jobs index website. Plus, view and download the July 2015 Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index infographic. Or, sign up to receive monthly alerts on the Paychex | IHS Small Business Jobs Index.
Paychex, Inc. is a leading provider of integrated human capital management solutions for payroll, HR, retirement, and insurance services. By combining its innovative software-as-a-service technology and mobility platform with dedicated, personal service, Paychex empowers small- and medium-sized business owners to focus on the growth and management of their business. Backed by more than 40 years of industry expertise, Paychex serves approximately 590,000 payroll clients across 100 locations and pays one out of every 15 American private sector employees. Learn more about Paychex by visiting www.paychex.com, and stay connected on Twitter and LinkedIn.
IHS is the leading source of insight, analytics and expertise in critical areas that shape today’s business landscape. Businesses and governments in more than 150 countries around the globe rely on the comprehensive content, expert independent analysis and flexible delivery methods of IHS to make high-impact decisions and develop strategies with speed and confidence. IHS has been in business since 1959 and became a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange in 2005. Headquartered in Englewood, Colorado, USA, IHS is committed to sustainable, profitable growth and employs about 8,800 people in 32 countries around the world.