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Michigan Payroll Jobs Increase Modestly during March

On a seasonally adjusted basis, Michigan total nonfarm payroll jobs moved up by 6,100, or 0.1 percent, to a total of 4,475,300 in March. This month, Michigan ranked 19th among all 50 states for the largest numeric payroll job change.

Michigan records modest payroll job gains during March. 

Monthly Job Change (Data in Thousands)

Source: Current Employment Statistics, Michigan Center for Data and Analytics

In the U.S., total nonfarm payroll jobs rose by 0.2 percent, or 303,000, over the month, one-tenth of a percentage point above the statewide rate of change. This increase was the greatest over-the-month job gain recorded in the U.S. in the last nine months. Over the month, the largest numerical job changes occurred within Private education and health services (+88,000); Government (+71,000); and Leisure and hospitality (+49,000). At the national level, total payroll employment was 1.9 percent above its year-ago job level.

This month’s payroll job gain was primarily due to additions within Michigan’s Construction (+4,000) sector. Few industry sectors recorded employment losses this month including Financial activities (-1,900); Trade, transportation, and utilities (-300); and Information (-300). However, job growth across several statewide sectors such as Government (+2,100); Manufacturing (+1,300); and Other services (+1,100) offset employment declines in March. Over the month, Construction (+2.0 percent) and Mining and logging (+1.4 percent) observed the most significant employment increases on a percentage basis.

Total payroll jobs in Michigan rose by over 9,000 in the first quarter 2024. This is the smallest first quarter job gain since the start of the pandemic in 2020 as job growth has slowed in recent months. While overall gains have not been as robust in recent quarters, both the Construction and Government sectors had their best first quarter job growth in decades. During the first quarter 2024, jobs within Michigan’s Construction sector grew by 10,100, which was the largest first quarter job gain in over 30 years. Similarly, the state’s Government sector added 10,200 jobs so far in 2024, the greatest first quarter employment growth seen in this industry as well. Employment increases within Government were primarily driven by job growth within two of its subsectors, State government and Local government, as both subsectors recorded a combined first quarter job gain of 9,500.

Mixed Employment Changes Among Michigan Major Industry Sectors Over the Year

Over the year, total nonfarm payroll jobs in Michigan increased by 36,200, or 0.8 percent. Since March 2023, five of 11 major statewide industry sectors demonstrated strong employment growth, with job additions seen in Government (+23,300); Private education and health services (+17,300); and Construction (+12,300). On a percentage basis, the largest over-the-year rate of change was recorded in the Construction (+6.6 percent) industry sector. Despite overall employment increases over the year, payroll jobs declined in the state’s Professional and business services (-15,300); Manufacturing (-7,200); and Financial activities (-4,500) industry sectors.

Since March 2023, total U.S. payroll jobs rose by 1.9 percent, 1.1 percentage points above Michigan’s average. The most pronounced over-the-year rate changes were recorded within Private education and health services (+4.3 percent); Construction (+3.4 percent); and Government (+2.9 percent).

Almost All Michigan Metro Areas Record Job Gains During March

Every Michigan Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), except Monroe, recorded employment gains (not seasonally adjusted) over the month. In March, the statewide rate of change (+0.4 percent) matched the nationwide rate. Additionally, three metro areas noted job advancements above Michigan’s rate, whereas four metro areas recorded a job rate change equal to the statewide rate. Employment in Mining, logging, and construction increased or remained unchanged in all Michigan metro areas, demonstrating an average employment advance of 3.8 percent across all MSAs over the month.

Eleven of Michigan’s 14 metro areas observed employment growth over the year. The Battle Creek (-0.4 percent) and Kalamazoo (-0.1 percent) MSAs were the only regions to record yearly declines, while Jackson was the only area to see no change since March 2023. The most significant over-the-year rate changes were noted in the Monroe (+4.1 percent), Muskegon (+3.2 percent), and Ann Arbor (+2.6 percent) metro areas. Comparable to statewide monthly trends, all Michigan metro areas demonstrated employment advances within the Mining, logging, and construction industry sector over the year.

Nearly all Michigan metro areas record employment growth in March.

(Not seasonally adjusted)

Source: Current Employment Statistics, Michigan Center for Data and Analytics