HOUSTON, March 9, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- According to the latest economic analysis from the BBVA Research team, February's unemployment figures confirm that labor market conditions continue to improve as COVID-19 cases slow down, vaccination rates rise and restrictions are lifted in some parts of the U.S.
Nonfarm payrolls rose by 379,000 in February, with strong gains in leisure and hospitality, and smaller increases in temporary help services, healthcare and social assistance, retail trade and manufacturing. The analysis, co-authored by BBVA Chief Economist Nathaniel Karp and Principal Economist Marcial Nava, notes that nonfarm payroll in leisure and hospitality remains 3.5 million below a year ago, accounting for 43 percent of the total gap in private nonfarm payroll.
The report indicates the number of people not in the labor force has remained flat for nearly six months at almost 101 million, still 5.5 million higher than 12 months ago. In addition, the participation rate has remained practically unchanged for the past six months at 61.4 percent. The employment-to-population ratio ticked up 0.1 percentage points to 57.6 percent, only 0.2 percentage points higher than last October's. Both measures remain significantly below their pre-pandemic rates of 63.3 percent and 61.1 percent.
The team's analysis concludes that in order to secure a faster recovery, policymakers should continue provisioning ample fiscal and monetary support. They indicate that premature removal of either could derail the post-pandemic recovery and eliminate the opportunity to boost the economy's long-term potential.
BBVA USA's research team analyzes the U.S. economy and Federal Reserve monetary policy. For its analyses, the economists create models and forecasts for growth, inflation, monetary policy and industries.
The Economic Research team also follows a variety of issues that affect the Sunbelt states where BBVA USA operates. Follow their work on Twitter @BBVAResearch and @BBVANews_USA.
BBVA Group BBVA (NYSE: BBVA) is a customer-centric global financial services group founded in 1857. The Group has a strong leadership position in the Spanish market, is the largest financial institution in Mexico, it has leading franchises in South America and the Sunbelt Region of the United States. It is also the leading shareholder in Turkey's Garanti BBVA. Its purpose is to bring the age of opportunities to everyone, based on our customers' real needs: provide the best solutions, helping them make the best financial decisions, through an easy and convenient experience. The institution rests in solid values: Customer comes first, we think big and we are one team. Its responsible banking model aspires to achieve a more inclusive and sustainable society.
In the U.S., BBVA is a Sunbelt-based financial institution that operates 641 branches, including 330 in Texas, 89 in Alabama, 63 in Arizona, 61 in California, 44 in Florida, 37 in Colorado and 17 in New Mexico. The bank ranks among the top 25 largest U.S. commercial banks based on deposit market share and ranks among the largest banks in Alabama (2nd), Texas (4th) and Arizona (6th). In the U.S., BBVA has been recognized as one of the leading small business lenders by the Small Business Administration (SBA) and ranked 8th nationally in terms of dollar volume of SBA loans originated in fiscal year 2018.