FARMINGTON — More people in November 2013 had jobs in the Farmington area than in July 2010, according to a recent analysis performed by Four Corners Economic Development.
The analysis compared the number of people employed in November 2013 and in July 2010. According to the data, 2,241 more people were employed in November 2013 than in July 2010. Over that same time span, the labor force in the area increased by 54.
A total of 51,939 people worked in the Farmington area in November 2013, the study stated.
Most likely, jobs created in the local manufacturing sector were responsible for the increase, said Ray Hagerman, Four Corners Economic Development chief executive officer. But, he said, because U.S. Department of Labor statistics for last year have yet to be released, it's difficult to pinpoint where the jobs were created and get a better picture of the health of the local economy.
"I think one of the things we need is to break down are the economic indicators for our area," he said.
Some of the economic indicators that could help better gauge the health of the local economy are banks loans, gross receipts tax activity and new companies, but Hagerman reasons that manufacturing is up because local manufacturing companies are beginning to expand.
Another sign the area economy is gaining strength is local companies are investing more resources lately into the area.
Praxiar in Kirtland recently completed a $15 million expansion, LOGOS Resources announced a $100 million investment for oil and gas exploration and WPX Energy announced the company would invest at least $160 million to develop oil wells in the Gallup Sandstone area.
The Federal Reserve Economic Data, created and maintained by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, states the unemployment rate in San Juan County was 6.1 percent in through 2013. The company states they compose their data using statistics from the Department of Labor. That data shows that the unemployment rate decreased from July 2010 to November 2013.
In July 2010, the unemployment rate was more than 10 percent, according to their data.
The job numbers from Four Corners Economic Development only include data from the Farmington area and don't provide a complete picture of San Juan County, Hagerman said.
The Farmington area had an unemployment rate of 6.4 percent in November, according to the New Mexico Department of Labor.
Hagerman said another unknown number is how many people have stopped looking for jobs, which wouldn't be included in the Four Corners Economic Development data.
He added that manufacturing comprises about 35 percent of jobs in the area, and wages and revenue generated from the manufacturing sector bring money into the local economy.
"That means money is coming in from the outside and being plowed into our community," he said.Erny Zah is The Daily Times business editor. He can be reached at 505-564-4638. and email@example.com. Follow him @ernyzah on Twitter.