Unemployment rates drop in Valley; lag behind state, country

Unemployment rates in the Rio Grande Valley decreased in April, with Cameron County checking in at the lowest unemployment rate of Valley counties and Edinburg leading the region’s cities, according to the Texas Workforce Commission.

Cameron County decreased its unemployment rate by .3 percent, with a 6.2 percent overall unemployment. Edinburg’s unemployment rate dropped to 4.6 percent, a decrease of .1 percent.

Hidalgo County decreased by .4 percent, bringing its unemployment rate to 6.5 percent.

While the numbers dropped, the Valley’s unemployment rates still lag behind Texas and the United States. In April, the U.S. unemployment rate was 3.7 percent, with Texas’ at 3.8 percent.

McAllen was just a decimal point below Edinburg. The city had a .3 percent unemployment decrease in April, checking in at a 4.7 percent rate.

Starr County decreased by .4 percent, leaving the county with a 10.4 percent unemployment rate. Mission and Harlingen followed McAllen, both with a 5.9 percent unemployment number.

The workforce commission highlighted the manufacturing sector in April, adding that there were 1,000 new jobs in that industry in the McAllen and Brownsville metropolitan statistical areas.

“At 3 to 4 percent of the total unemployment, it remains one of the smallest sectors in the RGV, along with construction and energy,” a Workforce Solutions statement read. “That being said, we are finally beginning to see this sector show signs of significant growth.”

Pharr’s unemployment rate in April checked in at 7.3 percent, San Juan at 7.6 percent and Weslaco at 7.4 percent.