The Alamo region unemployment rate improved to 5.6 percent, the lowest in four years, as retailers added thousands of jobs in November.
While many of those jobs were likely temporary, holiday positions, the addition of 4700 jobs to the retail sector is seen as a positive sign.
"That's significant because this time last year, retail only added 1400 jobs," said Eva Esquivel of Workforce Solutions Alamo.
The unemployment rate in November 2011 was 6.9 percent.
While retail gained 4700 positions, the net gain for November was 1700 jobs because most industries actually lost jobs between October and November.
However, comparing numbers to this time last year, jobs in the hospitality industry increased by 8 percent, construction grew by 4 percent and the business and professional sector gained 4.7 percent more jobs.
"We continue to look for improvement," Esquivel said. "We have a number of industries that are showing promise. For the first time, we have more jobs in the energy industry than ever before."
Heading into the new year, Esquivel said to watch for the Eagle Ford Shale, health care and professional job sectors to lead a continued rebound.
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