Most Texas cities are still seeing job gains and either steady or falling unemployment, despite the oil bust.
That's because, although many Texas economies are oil-economy dependent, they've learned to diversify into service industries, according to Labor Department data released last week on local and state unemployment rates for November.
Wall Street Journal staffer Ben Leubsdorf notes that while hiring and new payroll creation rates have slowed down in Texas, unemployment rates have held steady or even fallen. Leubsdorf writes:
Robert Steven Kaplan, the new president of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, said last month that despite weakness in energy and manufacturing, “the service sector has kept the Texas economy out of recession this year—with particular strength in the health care and leisure-and-hospitality industries.” He said the labor market’s “resilience is due to the state’s diversified economy as well as continued significant expansion of the petrochemical industry along the Gulf Coast—spurred by low prices for natural gas.”