Monday, November 24, 2014

Daggett County Economic Indicators

The Uintah Basin region felt the effects of the downturn starting in 2009, when the labor market shed 2,626 jobs from the previous year. Overall, 2010 also brought job losses, though by the end of the year Uintah and Duchene counties began adding jobs at a substantial rate. The tide really turned during the next two years when the region added over 3,300 payroll jobs. Year-over growth rates were 7.5 percent and 7.8 percent in 2011 and 2012, respectively. In 2013 however, the Uintah Basin lost momentum, and employment contracted slightly. So far, this year appears to be a reversal of last year’s trend with second quarter employment growth outpacing the state average.
  • Daggett County has been the exception to the region in terms of payroll employment growth. Since 2011, total employment has contracted with only the occasional month of growth. The 4.5 percent year-over job growth in the first quarter 2014 was countered by job losses of 4.9 percent in the second quarter. On average, the county lost 22 jobs from second quarter 2013 to second quarter 2014. Arts/entertainment/recreation shrank 23.9 percent and shed as many jobs (14) as any industry. 
  • As job growth stagnated in the county, the unemployment rate ticked up slightly. The rate settled at 4.2 percent in September (up from 4.0 percent in the previous six months), placing the county among the middle of the pack among Utah’s 29 counties. Daggett County’s unemployment rate has been slightly higher than the state average since early 2013.
  • The increase in the supply of labor, combined with the loss of some high-paying jobs, led to a 10.4 percent decrease in average monthly wages from second quarter 2013 to second quarter 2014. Wage growth will likely continue to reflect job growth.
  • Second quarter 2014 taxable sales in Daggett County rebounded from first quarter, which marked the first quarter of negative year-over growth in two years.
    Five more homes were sold in third quarter 2014 (11) compared to the year prior (6), and the year-to-date data point to a consistent upward trend in 2014 home sales (up 45.5 percent).