AUSTIN, Texas – Texas total nonfarm employment was up by 44,100 jobs in January, representing the addition of 253,900 jobs from a year ago. The Texas seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for January is 8.3 percent, unchanged from December 2010, and well below the U.S. unemployment rate for January of 9.0 percent.

“Employers continued to expand their workforces in January as we saw hiring across a majority of Texas industries,” said Texas Workforce Commission Chairman Tom Pauken. “The largest employment increase was in the Trade, Transportation and Utilities industry, which added a robust 15,800 jobs.”

Education and Health Services employment rose by 7,600 positions in January and over the year added a total of 47,200 jobs. Manufacturing employment expanded by 5,600 jobs and Mining and Logging continued its positive growth with the addition of 4,000 jobs.

“With January marking the fourth consecutive month of jobs gains, I am encouraged that jobs seekers looking for opportunities in Texas will find good jobs to provide for themselves and their families,” said TWC Commissioner Representing Labor Ronny Congleton. “Staff at TWC and Workforce Solutions offices across the state stand ready to assist those job seekers who remain unemployed.”

Construction jobs jumped by 3,700 positions in January and added 33,400 positions over the year. Professional and Business Services employment increased by 2,900 jobs for a total of 45,400 jobs added since last year.

“The Texas labor market is showing positive signs as employers continue to add jobs,” said TWC Commissioner Representing the Public Andres Alcantar. “With the addition of 253,900 jobs since last year, our annual job growth rate stands at 2.5 percent in January – and that’s good news for Texans.”

The Midland Metropolitan Statistical Area had the lowest January unemployment rate in the state at 5 percent. The Amarillo MSA had the second lowest unemployment rate in January at 5.8 percent, followed by the Lubbock MSA at 6.4 percent (not seasonally adjusted).