2004-04-08 / Business & Finance

Economy Continues To Strengthen Says N.Y. State’s Chief Economist

Economy Continues To Strengthen Says N.Y. State’s Chief Economist

Economy Continues To Strengthen Says N.Y. State’s Chief Economist

New employment statistics released by the State Department of Labor de-monstrate that New York’s economy continues to strengthen, with private job gains mirroring national job growth, according to the state’s chief economist Stephen Kagaan.

"From February 2003 to February 2004, statewide private employment rose 16,300 or 0.2 percent while, significantly, New York City recorded its first year-over-year increase in private jobs since May 2001," Kagaan said. "By comparison, national private employment was up 0.2 percent," he added.

The improvement in New York City was driven by the strengthening of the retailing, broadcasting, publishing, computer-systems design, security services and employment services industries.

"Outside New York City," the economist said, "the rest of the state increased private jobs 0.4 percent - twice the national growth rate. Exceptional gains were registered in the suburbs and among the upstate regions."

All suburban counties had a vigorous expansion of private jobs: Nassau-Suffolk (+0.9 percent), Westchester (+1.2 percent), Rockland (+.2.2 percent) and Putnam (+4.9 percent).

From February 2003 to February 2004, Glens Falls (+2.6 percent) led upstate, followed closely by Newburgh (+2.4 percent) and Dutchess (+2.1 percent). Strong gains were also recorded in Jamestown (+1.4 percent), the North Country (+1.3 percent), the Capital region (+1.2 percent) and Syracuse (+0.8 percent). The 17 non- metropolitan mostly rural counties outside the North Country increased private jobs (+0.3%).

The gain for Jamestown (+1.4 percent) was best since July 2000; Syracuse (+0.8 percent) was best since October 2000; the North Country (+ 1.3 percent) was best since January 200 1.

The regions with declines in private employment include Elmira (-1.5 percent), Bliighamton (-0.5 percent), West-ern New York (-0.9 percent), Utica-Rome (-0.4 percent) and Rochester (-0.2 percent). In Western New York and in Utica-Rome, some of the decline in private jobs was due to the required reclassification of Indian-owned enterprises from "private" to "local government."

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