According to the most-recent jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), between December and January, Maryland added 3,100 Total Nonfarm jobs including an increase of 4,900 Total Private jobs and  a decrease of 1,800 Government jobs. December’s preliminary employment figures were revised up by 700 jobs, resulting in a net gain of 5,600 positions. Maryland’s unemployment rate in January was 3.7 percent.

On the supersector level, Education and Health Services posted the biggest increase of 3,100 positions, followed by Trade, Transportation and Utilities with 2,000 positions. Moderate gains were also seen in Information (+500 jobs) and Leisure and Hospitality (+400 jobs). The most-significant drops since December were in Government (-1,800 jobs); Mining, Logging, and Construction (-600 jobs); and Professional and Business Services (-600 jobs). Maryland’s subsector-level gains were greatest in Educational Services (+1,700 positions), Health Care and Social Assistance (+1,400 positions), Retail Trade (+1,300 positions), and Transportation and Utilities (+1,300 positions). Aside from State Government, which declined by 1,800 positions, Wholesale Trade (-600 jobs); Mining, Logging, and Construction (-600 jobs); Federal Government (-500 jobs); and Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services (-500 jobs) also showed moderate losses. Local Government gains of 500 jobs offset the impact of the Federal Government job loss.

Neighboring states in the Mid-Atlantic region (Virginia, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Washington, D.C.) had significant gains of 25,000 Total Nonfarm jobs, including a gain of 25,400 Total Private jobs and loss of 400 Government jobs. Neighboring states’ largest gains on the supersector level were in Professional and Business Services (+9,000 positions) and Leisure and Hospitality (+8,700 positions), followed by Financial Activities (+3,200 positions) and Mining, Logging, and Construction (+2,600 positions). The greatest supersector-level losses were in Education and Health Services, which declined by 1,800 jobs. The unemployment rate for neighboring states in January stayed constant at 3.7 percent, unchanged from December.

The Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, which covers the Fifth District (including the state of Maryland), reported that there is increasing demand for workers in the labor market, especially for hourly staff, and that some employers are offering additional compensation such as bonuses or relocation support to workers. Overall, growth in the region was modest with some industries showing negative impacts from the partial government shutdown or adverse weather. Impacts attributed to the shutdown included projects delays, decreased revenues, and reduced employment levels. Despite the substantial drop in tourism reported in D.C., Maryland showed a slight positive increase in the both the Accommodation and Food Services subsector and Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation subsector, with 100 and 300 jobs added, respectively. Demand for trucking remains strong, though the growth is reportedly slowing, with adverse weather and anticipated lower retail demand cited by the Richmond Fed as factors potentially impacting this reduction. In Maryland, subsector-level gains were significant for Transportation and Utilities, with 1,300 jobs added since December. In the Fifth District’s housing market, home prices continued to show some mild growth, with housing inventory remaining low in most markets. Maryland’s Real Estate and Rental and Leasing subsector showed a modest increase of 200 jobs since December.

Mid-Atlantic Regional Employment Workbook

To make more sense of what’s happening with Maryland’s employment numbers, we’ve embedded our new tool: the Mid-Atlantic Regional Employment Workbook. This dashboard allows you to examine 29 different industries and see how employment is varying in Maryland as well as four other states in the Mid-Atlantic region. To use the dashboard select a sector of the economy that interests you from the dropdown at the top. When you change the sector of interest, the map and five line graphs will update to reflect historical data for that industry. Want to know how employment changed in the sector last month? Hover over each state in the map for percentage changes. Or hover over the line graphs to get more detailed information on the number of employees each month since January 2017 by state.

About the Authors

Daraius Irani, Ph.D.

Daraius Irani, Ph.D.

Vice President

Daraius Irani, Ph.D. serves as vice president of Strategic Partnerships and Applied Research. He fosters the development of partnerships between business, government, and education that contributes to the economic vitality of our region. He also serves as chief economist at the Regional Economic Studies Institute and is often called on by state agencies, private companies, and local governments to provide insight on proposed policies, development, and economic forecasting. With a passion for all things economic, Daraius's posts focus on a wide range of topics from immigration to bicycling.

Katie Menking

Katie Menking


Katie Menking serves as economist at the Regional Economic Studies Institute. She has numerous roles, including primary and secondary data collection and analysis, methodology design, and report writing and editing. Katie is a primary author of Eye on the Economy, RESI’s monthly analysis of unemployment data. Read Katie’s Posts