Mississippi Leads In Creating Service Industry Jobs
By Maureen Cosgrove, Staff Writer
Mississippi led the way in increasing jobs and revenue in the service sector between 1992 and 1997, a new Census Bureau report shows. Service industry jobs, in hotels, restaurants, computer rental firms, technical training schools, temp agencies and other similar enterprises, accounted for more than half of all new jobs created nationwide in the non-farm private economy during the most recent five-year period for which complete information is available.
Over the time span measured in the report, Mississippi saw service sector revenue increase 94 percent, from $5.5 billion to $10.7 billion. Hotel and motel revenues, which grew from $235 million to $1.34 billion in the Magnolia State at a time when legalized gambling was being introduced, contributed heavily to this sharp increase.
In addition to lodging, technical schools providing data-processing training, computer rental and leasing, software publishing and temporary employment agencies were among the burgeoning elements of the service industry nationwide.
"I think it's striking that the fastest growing service industry was computer data-processing schools. That tells you right there that it's the high technology and moving into new sectors that's driven so much of the economy," said Robert Marske, spokesperson for the economic planning staff of the Census Bureau.
The Census Bureau report was released last week.
Following Mississippi in service sector revenue growth were South Carolina with an 88 percent increase, Colorado and Delaware, both increasing 82 percent, and Washington with a 75 percent increase in service sector revenue growth. Nationally, service sector revenue grew 46 percent, or from $1.6 trillion to $2.4 trillion, from 1992 to 1997.
Mississippi also saw service sector jobs increase 66 percent (from 108,000 to 180,000). Arizona was second with a 64 percent increase in service sector jobs, followed by Georgia at a 51 percent increase, and Colorado and North Carolina both at 44 percent increases.
The report, Comparative Statistics, compares Economic Census results from 1997 with those from 1992 at the national and state levels. None of the report's figures are adjusted for inflation, Marske said.
In other sectors of the economy, South Dakota led states in retail sales growth from 1992 to 1997, almost doubling retail sales revenue from $5.1 billion to $9.9 billion, or 93 percent. Nevada, Utah, Arizona and North Carolina followed with retail sales revenue increases of 64, 62, 53 and 50 percent, respectively. Nationwide, retail sales revenue increased by 34 percent from $1.9 to $2.5 trillion.
New Mexico, South Dakota and Nevada all had triple-digit increases in the dollar value of manufacturing products being shipped. New Mexico, which had growth mainly in electronic and electrical equipment, saw shipment values rise 114 percent. South Dakota's shipment values increased 107 percent from industrial equipment, a category that includes computers. And Nevada was bolstered by paper products to a shipment value increase of 102 percent during the five-year period. All three states started from relatively low levels of manufacturing, however, Marske said.
Nationally, the dollar value of manufacturing products being shipped rose 32 percent from 1992 to 1997.