AUSTIN – Total nonagricultural employment in Texas rose by 37,900 positions in July with significant job growth in professional and business services, education and health services and construction.

The number of employed Texans remained relatively steady in July; however, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose to 7.9 percent in July due to the number of people entering the workforce.

Last month, the Texas labor force totaled more than 12 million people for the first time. The Texas unemployment rate is up from 7.5 percent in June. The U.S. seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for July stood at 9.4 percent.

“The national economic recession continued to have an adverse impact on the Texas economy. Nonetheless, the Texas unemployment rate remained well below the national rate, and there were signs of positive growth in certain industries,” said Texas Workforce Commission chairman Tom Pauken.

Texas employers recorded broad-based job gains in seven of eleven industries in July regaining some of the lost ground from earlier in the year. Professional and business services jumped by 18,700 jobs in July for the third monthly increase this year. Education and health services employment grew by 14,400 positions in July, bringing the industry’s total job growth to 63,800 jobs since July 2008.

“At more than 12 million workers, the Texas labor force is larger than ever,” said TWC commissioner representing labor, Ronny Congleton. “TWC is here to help those joining the labor force with work search assistance, skills training and other services.”

Construction posted a job gain in July of 3,000 jobs after several months of job losses. Leisure and hospitality employment increased 2,800 positions in July bringing the annual job growth to 14,300 positions. Financial activities employment increased by 1,800 jobs in July marking the third month of job growth.

“Although the Texas unemployment rate was up in July, Texas continued to trend well below the national unemployment rate of 9.4 percent,” said TWC commissioner representing the public, Andres Alcantar. “Job growth in many industries in July provided job opportunities for those entering the labor force.”

The Amarillo Metropolitan Statistical Area experienced the lowest unemployment rate in the state at 5.8 percent (not seasonally adjusted) followed by the Lubbock MSA with 6.1 percent and the Midland MSA with 6.3 percent.

The Texas Workforce Commission is a state agency dedicated to helping Texas employers, workers and communities prosper economically.

For details on TWC and the services it offers in unison with its network of local workforce development boards, call 512-463-8556 or visit

www.texasworkforce.org.