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2011 RANKINGS: TX Metros Lead Jobs Surge

It should come as no surprise that three Metro areas in Texas finished in the top tier of the Job Growth Leaders category (for large MSAs) in Business Facilities’ 2011 Metro Rankings Report. That’s because Texas recently became the first large state in the nation to brings its jobs totals back to pre-recession levels, led by a surging oil and gas industry.

Dallas/Ft. Worth notched first place, Houston third place and Austin/San Marcos fourth place for MSAs with an average employment of more than 750,000, while another Texas city, El Paso, made the top five in the medium category.

The Lone Star State employed 224,200 workers in exploration and production in June, according to the Texas Petro Index—more than the 223,200 at the height of the last energy boom in October 2008 and nearly 15 percent more than in June 2010, according to Karr Ingham, the Midland economist who created and maintains the index. Oil production also beat out natural gas as the dominant Texas fossil fuel product by value during the first six months of 2011, reversing a trend that started in 1997 when natural gas began to dominate the state’s energy production.

“In the past 12 months, the industry has added more than 28,600 jobs, which is nearly 13 percent of all jobs added to the Texas economy,” Ingham said in announcing the result.

The oil and gas industry only accounts for about 2 percent of the state’s entire workforce payroll, but it tends to have an oversized impact on the entire state economy because it is so capital-intensive. By some estimates, as much as two-thirds of Texas’ job creation in the past year could be tied directly and indirectly to the oil and gas exploration business.

Houston’s solid jobs bonafides were amplified by its first place finish in our Top 10 Manufacturing Cities Metro Ranking, topping New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, St. Louis, and Dallas respectively.

The Greater Rochester, NY area, Raleigh, NC and Akron, OH led the way in our mid-sized Job Growth Leaders category, while Sandusky, OH, Elizabethtown, KY and Anderson, SC topped the leaderboard for the smaller MSAs.

Here are the top 10 finishers in the large MSA job growth category:

2011 METRO RANKINGS: JOB GROWTH LEADERS

1. DALLAS/FT. WORTH, TX

2. MILWAUKEE, WI

3. HOUSTON, TX

4. AUSTIN/SAN MARCOS, TX

5. ORLANDO, FL

6. SAN JOSE, CA

7. SEATTLE, WA

8. PITTSBURGH, PA

9. SAN DIEGO, CA

10. COLUMBUS, OH

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