No Beige, no Green! Aqua Book colors the Coastal BendNo Beige, no Green! Aqua Book colors the Coastal Bendhttps://www.recenter.tamu.edu/news/newstalk-texas/?Item=43192014-04-29T07:48:00Z2014-04-29T00:00:00Z

COASTAL BEND - The Coastal Bend’s 12 counties are in the midst of economic expansion stemming from growth in oil and gas drilling activity and a renaissance in residential construction, according to Dr. Jim Lee’s inaugural Aqua Book.

The Coastal Bend region includes Aransas, Bee, Brooks, Duval, Jim Wells, Kenedy, Kleberg, Live Oak, McMullen, Nueces, Refugio and San Patricio counties. Furthermore, the counties of Bee, Live Oak and McMullen lie within the Eagle Ford Shale production zone.

By year-end 2013, the regional unemployment rate dipped to 5.3 percent, with Live Oak and McMullen counties unemployment rates below 4 percent due to oil and gas drilling.

Oil and gas production in the Eagle Ford Shale has helped boost employment growth by more than 10 percent in Corpus Christi’s mining and construction industries. Local businesses in lodging and food services together have added 8 percent more jobs due to spillover from the oil boom.

With a whopping 15 percent employment growth in its construction sector, Corpus Christi added 3,800 new construction jobs in 2013, according to the Associated General Contractors of America. Those figures represent the most construction jobs added among all Texas metro areas in 2013, and were responsible for more than two thirds of the total employment gain in the metro area.

New home starts in some Coastal Bend communities have approached their levels set in 2008, which marked the end of the last housing boom.

The median home price for the City of Corpus Christi appreciated more than 7 percent in 2013. The level of inventory in the market has been reduced to below five months, about half of that five years ago.

The title of the Aqua Book parallels the informal names of economic reports such as the Beige Book or Green Book, issued by the Federal Reserve. Aqua is also a mix between blue and green, the two official colors of Texas A&M University–Corpus Christi.

For the full report, see Aqua Book 2014: Coastal Bend Economic Snapshots under Market overview in Corpus Christi Market Data Sources.

Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi
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