KBTX Interviews Andrew Rettenmaier on May Economic Indicators

May 22, 2020
Summary: Andrew Rettenmaier, PERC’s executive associate director, was interviewed in a KBTX news segment featuring PERC’s publication, Economic Indicators, on Thursday, May 21, 2020. The May edition of the report, released Thursday, provides a first look at the effects of the coronavirus pandemic, as well as the mitigating factors put in place to slow its spread, on our local economy.
The report shares data on unemployment insurance claims for the U.S., Texas, as well as for College Station-Bryan.
"This month we have the beginnings of the official numbers relating to unemployment, sales tax revenues, and nonfarm employment that come from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the comptroller at the state of Texas," said Rettenmaier.
Based on the weekly unemployment claims in the College Station-Bryan metropolitan area Rettenmaier stated, “Our number is now 804 for the week ending May 9, that number is moving in the right direction. It’s lower than the number from the previous week and so far, it’s the lowest number of initial claims that we’ve had since March 21.”
As Texas continues its phased reopening of the state, it also faces another hurdle – a hit on the oil industry in the form of precipitously low oil prices. Locally, the College Station-Bryan MSA, which includes Brazos, Burleson and Robertson counties, the number of oil drilling permits issued has dropped from an average of 15 per month in 2019 to only 6 in April.
State-wide vehicle traffic and air travel out of Easterwood airport have also dropped significantly, as detailed in the report. Since mid-April there has been a gradual increase in both state level vehicle traffic and in national level air travel. 

To view the interview on KBTX, click here.
Click here for the May issue of Economic Indicators.