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Report Shows Robust Economic Growth in Second Quarter in NYC

New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer

NEW YORK CITY—New York City’s economy hit its stride in the second quarter growing at more than double the rate from the same period a year earlier.

According to a report by New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer, the city economy grew at a 3.3% clip in the second quarter of this year as compared to the 1.5% rate posted in the second quarter of 2016.

“Since the Great Recession, our growth has outpaced other cities and states—and New York City seems to be hitting its stride. From record-high job numbers, to more robust wages, to new investment, we’re seeing a stronger economy than at any time in recent memory,” New York City Comptroller Stringer said.

New York City added 23,400 private sector jobs in the second quarter, for a 2.5% seasonally adjusted annual rate of growth. Job growth in the city was slower than the first quarter when the city added 32,300 private sector jobs the largest increase since the third quarter of 2014. Continuing a multi-year trend, however, nearly 40% of the private-sector jobs added in the second quarter of 2017 were in low-wage sectors.

“We must have an economy that delivers for everyone. Yet, the majority of jobs we’re creating are in low-wage industries—and New Yorkers are still suffering from a crisis of affordability,” says Stringer. “We have to ensure that the jobs we’re creating are good-paying ones, and as the uncertainty in Washington grows every day, we have to prepare now for whatever could come down the road.”

Seasonality adjusted, the city’s unemployment rate was 4.3% in the second quarter —flat as compared to the rate in the first quarter of 2017, and the lowest on record.

The export sector added more than twice as many jobs as the local job sector. The number of employed city residents reached a record high of nearly 4.1 million in the second quarter of 2017 —an increase of 87,200 over the first quarter, and the largest quarterly gain since 1985.

The city’s labor force—the number of New Yorkers employed or looking for a job—reached a historical high of more than 4.2 million, increasing by a record 90,800. As a result, the city’s labor force participation rate rose to a record high of 61.5%.

Other key data in the Stringer report pointed to a stronger venture capital market in the city. Reversing a multi-quarter trend, venture capital investment in the New York City metropolitan area shot up 66.3% in the second quarter of this year, hitting approximately $2.8 billion.

Another positive data point was that the total number of building permits filed in the city rose 49.2% on a year-over-year basis, reaching 5,680 in the second quarter of 2017.

Forward-looking economic indicators were mixed. The current business condition index as reported by Institute for Supply Management-New York fell from 55.1% in the first quarter to 52.7% in the second quarter. However, the second quarter rate was higher than the 46.5% rate posted a year ago. The City Comptroller’s office notes that and any reading above 50% indicates economic growth. The ISM-NY six-month outlook showed stronger confidence in short-term economic growth.

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