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St. Louis area is on pace for biggest job gain since 2015

St. Louis area is on pace for biggest job gain since 2015

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Ferguson Unity Weekend Career Fair

"This fair was definitely worth my time," said Aaron McDaniels of Florissant, who takes over the controls of an excavator simulator computer program while talking with Rick Hickerson, an on-the-job-trainer with the Local 513 operating engineers journeymen apprenticeship at the 5th Annual Ferguson Unity Weekend Career Fair on Friday, Aug. 2, 2019, at the Ferguson Community Center. McDaniels, a graduate of North Technical High School has interests to pursue electrical engineering. Photo by Laurie Skrivan, lskrivan@post-dispatch.com

Metro St. Louis gained just 200 jobs in November, but appears on pace for its best job-creation year since 2015.

The latest seasonally adjusted numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics show the metro area with a gain of 21,700 jobs, or 1.6%, between November 2018 and last month.

If that holds for December, it will be better than 2018's gain of 12,600 jobs. It also may mean a rare year in which St. Louis grows faster than the nation, which had a 1.5% job gain for the 12 months ending in November.

The construction industry, which is combined with mining and logging in the statistics, added 5,300 jobs in the latest 12 months. That amounts to 7.9% growth, well above the national average.

Leisure and hospitality firms, such as hotels and restaurants, added 3,400 jobs and retailers added 2,900. Figures for specific industries are not seasonally adjusted.

The BLS figures also show that average hourly earnings in metro St. Louis grew 5.9% in the past 12 months, and weekly wages grew 6.2%. Those estimates are not adjusted for inflation.

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