The Houston metropolitan area business-cycle index produced by the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas indicates economic activity in the city grew at an annualized rate of 9.6 percent in October, the highest reading since April. The ability of Houston and Texas to plug into the global economy has played a large part in the region’s exceptional performance this year. The slow recovery in the U.S. continues, but risks in the euro area and some emerging economies continue to mount, clouding forecasts. However, Houston’s economic fundamentals seem strong, and the outlook remains positive.
Annualized nonfarm payroll employment growth of 6.7 percent in October brought the average monthly growth rate so far this year to 3.31 percent for a total of over 2.62 million jobs. Since the trough of Houston’s business cycle, the city has added nearly 106 percent of what was lost through the Great Recession.