June Economic Trends report for metro Milwaukee: Recovery continues, but employment still short of pre-pandemic levels
MILWAUKEE – Milwaukee’s economy continues to point upward as 20 of 22 available June business activity indicators improved over year-ago levels, according to a monthly report by the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce (MMAC.) June’s total matches the 20 positive indicators registered in May.
Since the low point of the COVID-19 pandemic last year, the metro area has recovered an estimated 66,200 non-farm jobs. This represents 59% of the initial total job loss (112,400) attributed to shutdowns and other effects of the pandemic on our economy.
Highlights of the data include:
- Nonfarm employment in the metro area reached 835,300 in June, a 4.2% increase from one year ago. June’s increase ranked slower than May’s 7.2% year-over-year
- By major industry, eight of 10 major industry sectors posted year-over-year job increases in June. Leisure & hospitality posted the largest percentage job rise, up 21.4%, as this sector continues to recover from deep COVID-19 losses. The construction, mining & natural resources (down 5.4%) and financial activities (down 5%) sectors posted June declines vs. year-ago
- The metro area’s seasonally unadjusted unemployment rate averaged 5.5% in June, down
4.5 percentage points from the 10% rate posted in June 2020. Presently, the statewide rate for June ranked lower at 4.5% while the U.S. rate ranked higher (6.1%.)
MMAC Monthly Economic Trends
Manufacturing related indicators pointed upward. Manufacturing employment rose 4.5% in June (vs. one year ago) up from the 3.7% increase posted in May. In addition, June production and earnings indictors in the manufacturing sector rose. The workweek length for manufacturing production workers rose 6.5% vs. one year ago to 39.6 hours. Average weekly earnings for such workers increased 11.5% (to $969) vs. one year ago while average hourly earnings rose 4.7% (to $24.47.)
- The trend in local housing and real estate indicators remains strongly positive with both metro area existing homes sold (up 29.6%) and Milwaukee County mortgages (up 15.2%) recording double-digit year-over-year