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How’s Business in Middle Tennessee? 2019 Nashville Employment and Economic Outlook

The flowers are blooming, the weather is warming and spring is in the air.

That means it’s time once again to check in on the Nashville metro area’s economy and job market. Each March, we use data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on the Nashville / Davidson / Murfreesboro / Franklin Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) to compile practical insights for your business.

How has the Nashville MSA’s economy fared in the last year?

New data was just released at the end of January, and the numbers indicate that everything is still “coming up roses” for Middle Tennessee:

  • Unemployment has dropped even further in Nashville! Remarkably, the unemployment rate in the Nashville area has tracked well below the national average for yet another year – and once again, our unemployment rate is lower than this time last year. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ January 31, 2019 Nashville Area Economic Summary, the Nashville area’s unemployment rate is at 2.3% – more than a full percent under the national rate (3.7%), and slightly lower than our rate this time last year (2.4%).
  • Coming in at an astounding 2.1%, Williamson County continues to have the lowest unemployment rate of all the counties in our MSA.
  • Total nonfarm employment extended its 6-year climb, rising another 2.0% in the Nashville area from the same time last year. Jobs in professional and business services showed the biggest employment gains (up by 8,400), while trade/transportation/utilities jobs posted the highest percentage increase (up 3.6%). This past year, however, three business categories – manufacturing, finance and leisure/hospitality – posted small net job losses.
  • Average hourly wages in the Nashville area ($22.65) continue tracking below the national average ($24.34), although they have continued to increase year-over-year (rising from $22.01 to $22.65 in the past 12 months).

While wage and employment growth are reassuring, chronic low unemployment has created critical talent shortages throughout Middle Tennessee – making recruiting great people even more challenging. Employers that pay competitive wages, proactively recruit passive candidates and build a strong employment brand will win the war for talent.

Want comprehensive Nashville employment and economic statistics?

Follow these links:

Nashville Area Economic Summary

Nashville Economy at a Glance

Or, just give your local Wood Personnel office a call. As a leading Middle TN employment agency, we can help you:

  • find the good people you need – even in a tight candidate market;
  • keep your workforce productive and flexible;
  • control overhead and manage risks;
  • and thrive in any economy.