It’s been awhile since Errors of Enchantment used the job-tracking tool the Rio Grande Foundation built earlier this year to assess job growth in the Land of Enchantment. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics conducts a regular analysis of 12-month employment growth in the nation’s metropolitan statistical areas. Our analysis explores New Mexico’s four MSAs, compared with the 49 MSAs found in the state’s five neighbors: Arizona, Utah, Colorado, Oklahoma, and Texas.
As depicted in the chart above, average job growth from October 2016 to October 2017, for the neighbor MSAs, was 1.5 percent. Albuquerque tied the regional mark, but Santa Fe grew by just 0.6 percent, Farmington dipped by 0.2 percent, and Las Cruces fell by 0.5 percent. Not an impressive result for a state that is “a national leader in economic growth,” is it?
Utah’s MSAs — St. George (4.4 percent), Provo-Orem (3.7 percent), Logan (2.8 percent), Salt Lake City (2.2 percent), and Ogden-Clearfield (1.9 percent) — continued to dominate, with each topping the regional average. The Beehive State, with a long tradition of economic liberty and personal responsibility, has much to teach New Mexico.