The Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas says Texas job gains are accelerating far faster than expected, and is now seeing more job growth among a greater number of sectors than at any time since October of 2016, before the oil price crash caused a temporary slowdown in the state's economy, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
Economist Emily Kerr says job growth hit an amazing 4.9% in January, building on 5% job growth in December, both exceptional numbers.
Kerr says because of that, the Dallas Fed is upping its prediction of 2017 job growth to 2.7%, from 1.9%, or 331,000 new private sector jobs added this year.
Kerr says the Texas Business Outlook survey also shows strengthening activity in 2017, with services and manufacturing poised to do well this year.
"So far in 2017, the expansion of the service sector had been a bit stronger than what we have seen in 2015 and 2016," she said.
But Kerr warns that there are some potential problems on the horizon. The still strong U.S. dollar threatens manufacturing growth, by making us exports more expensive in foreign countries.
Continued talk of trade wars is also threatening the U.S. economy. Texas is by far the largest exporting state in the USA, and if Texas were an independent country, it would be the 20th largest exporter in the world.