Fond du Lac, Hattiesburg were among the U.S. cities that added jobs during the pandemic

From February to November 2020, construction was the only sector to add jobs, growing its total employment by 2%.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating effect on the United States. Health authorities reported over 26.7 million cases as of Feb. 4, more than 450,000 of which have proven fatal. The American economy has suffered as well. In February 2020, the month before the pandemic resulted in a nationwide state of emergency, 158.7 million Americans held jobs. In November, that number fell to 149.8 million – a 5.6% decline.

Yet not every job market in the country suffered. Of the nearly 400 major metropolitan areas in the U.S., employment increased throughout the pandemic in 28.

To identify the American cities adding the most jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics on the percent change in total employment from February 2020 to November 2020 in all U.S. metro areas.

The 28 metro areas with job growth are concentrated in just 11 states, scattered across all parts of the country. One thing all of these places have in common is that their labor force grew significantly from February to November 2020. During those nine months, each metro area saw their labor force increase by hundreds if not thousands of workers.

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As offices and other workplaces shut down over COVID-19 concerns, many companies let their employees work remotely. As the pandemic has stretched on, some employees have chosen to relocate from larger areas like New York City to smaller, less expensive cities.

From February to November 2020, construction was the only sector to add jobs, growing its total employment by 2%. The industry that shrank the least was the trade, transportation, and utilities sector, with employment declining just 0.3%. In more than 20 of the cities that added jobs during the pandemic, the trade, transportation, and utilities sector actually grew and frequently stood out as the sector added the most jobs. This sector includes retail trade, which encapsulates large e-commerce companies like Amazon, which – the online retail giant added hundreds of thousands of jobs to meet demand during the pandemic.

Johnson City, Tennessee.

28. Johnson City, Tennessee

• Increase in employment: 0%

• Total employment Feb. 2020: 88,912

• Total employment Nov. 2020: 88,917

• Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.7%

• Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.5%

• Fastest growing industry: Financial Activities (+2.2%)

• Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +1,762 (+1.9%)

27. Hinesville, Georgia

• Increase in employment: 0.1%

• Total employment Feb. 2020: 33,411

• Total employment Nov. 2020: 33,456

• Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.5%

• Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.2%

• Fastest growing industry: . (+.%)

• Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +693 (+2%)

26. Ogden-Clearfield, Utah

• Increase in employment: 0.2%

• Total employment Feb. 2020: 328,676

• Total employment Nov. 2020: 329,321

• Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 2.4%

• Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 4%

• Fastest growing industry: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+7.5%)

• Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +6,094 (+1.8%)

25. St. George, Utah

• Increase in employment: 0.3%

• Total employment Feb. 2020: 75,289

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 75,509

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 2.9%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 4.4%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Manufacturing (+5.7%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +1,475 (+1.9%)

24. Rome, Georgia

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 0.3%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 42,931

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 43,060

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.6%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 4.8%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+3.8%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +678 (+1.5%)

23. Eugene, Oregon

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 0.4%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 174,595

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 175,316

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.5%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 6.2%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Construction (+6.8%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +5,936 (+3.3%)

22. Oshkosh-Neenah, Wisconsin

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 0.4%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 88,495

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 88,872

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.1%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 4.1%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+4.1%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +1,325 (+1.5%)

Fargo, North Dakota.

21. Fargo, North Dakota

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 0.6%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 136,501

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 137,307

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 2.1%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.5%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Education and Health Services (+0.4%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +2,772 (+2%)

​​​​​​​20. Logan, Utah

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 0.6%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 70,333

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 70,763

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 2%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 3%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Professional and Business Services (+6.6%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +1,183 (+1.6%)

19. Twin Falls, Idaho

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 0.7%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 52,514

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 52,860

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 2.6%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 4.4%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: . (+.%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +1,389 (+2.6%)

18. Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, Mississippi

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 0.7%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 155,847

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 156,881

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.4%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 6.8%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+3.6%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +3,584 (+2.2%)

17. Clarksville, Tennessee

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 0.8%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 113,533

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 114,437

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 4.2%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.8%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+8.4%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +2,919 (+2.5%)

​​​​​​​16. Bismarck, North Dakota

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 1%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 66,170

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 66,811

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 2.4%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.8%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Financial Activities (+2.9%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +1,698 (+2.5%)

​​​​​​​15. Jackson, Tennessee

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 1%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 63,140

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 63,780

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.5%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.6%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Professional and Business Services (+9.7%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +2,106 (+3.2%)

Lincoln, Nebraska.

14. Lincoln, Nebraska

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 1%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 182,812

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 184,727

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 2.7%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 2.9%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Education and Health Services (+4.8%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +2,358 (+1.3%)

13. Sheboygan, Wisconsin

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 1.3%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 60,034

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 60,832

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 2.9%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 4%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+3.3%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +1,527 (+2.5%)

12. Anchorage, Alaska

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 1.4%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 181,996

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 184,477

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.2%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 8.1%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Professional and Business Services (+3.3%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +8,766 (+4.6%)

​​​​​​​11. Cleveland, Tennessee

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 1.7%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 59,317

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 60,302

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.5%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 5%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Leisure and Hospitality (+8.2%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +2,026 (+3.3%)

​​​​​​​10. Chattanooga, Tennessee

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 1.7%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 269,570

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 274,120

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.3%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 4.5%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Education and Health Services (+4.8%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +8,175 (+2.9%)

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9. Valdosta, Georgia

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 1.8%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 62,025

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 63,170

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.3%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.3%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+12.6%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +2,548 (+4%)

8. Fairbanks, Alaska

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 1.9%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 41,828

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 42,634

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.1%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 6.5%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Manufacturing (+20%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +1,531 (+3.5%)

Morristown, Tennessee.

7. Morristown, Tennessee

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 1.9%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 51,700

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 52,701

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.9%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.1%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Education and Health Services (+3.5%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +1,778 (+3.3%)

​​​​​​​6. Idaho Falls, Idaho

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 2.4%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 72,094

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 73,812

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 2.2%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.7%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Leisure and Hospitality (+20.9%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +2,891 (+3.9%)

​​​​​​​5. Racine, Wisconsin

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 2.5%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 94,004

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 96,327

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 4.3%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.9%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+9%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +4,155 (+4.2%)

4. Monroe, Louisiana

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 2.7%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 75,056

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 77,119

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.9%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 7%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+18%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +3,115 (+3.9%)

3. Knoxville, Tennessee

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 2.8%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 420,763

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 432,597

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3.2%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 4.8%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Professional and Business Services (+5.7%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +19,488 (+4.5%)

2. Hattiesburg, Mississippi

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 2.9%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 65,216

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 67,107

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 4.7%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 5.7%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+8%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +2,721 (+4%)

1. Fond du Lac, Wisconsin     • Increase in employment:  3.1%     • Total employment Feb. 2020:  55,479     • Total employment Nov. 2020:  57,188     • Feb. 2020 unemployment rate:  3.0%     • Nov. 2020 unemployment rate:  4.4%     • Fastest growing industry:  Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+8.1%)     • Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020:  +2,620 (+4.6%)    ALSO READ: 25 Most Dangerous Jobs In America

1. Fond du Lac, Wisconsin

•​​​​​​​ Increase in employment: 3.1%

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Feb. 2020: 55,479

•​​​​​​​ Total employment Nov. 2020: 57,188

•​​​​​​​ Feb. 2020 unemployment rate: 3%

•​​​​​​​ Nov. 2020 unemployment rate: 4.4%

•​​​​​​​ Fastest growing industry: Trade, Transportation, and Utilities (+8.1%)

•​​​​​​​ Labor force increase Feb.-Nov. 2020: +2,620 (+4.6%)

Methodology:

To identify the American cities adding the most jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the percent change in total employment from February 2020 to November 2020 in all U.S. metro areas. Data on employment (the number of people employed), the total size of the labor force (those working and looking for work), and the unemployment rate are all from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and are seasonally adjusted. Employment by industry at the sector level is also from the BLS and is not seasonally adjusted. Data on median household income is from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey and is for 2019. Data on confirmed COVID-19 cases came from various state and local health departments.

24/7 Wall Street is a USA TODAY content partner offering financial news and commentary. Its content is produced independently of USA TODAY.

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