Mississippi has experienced its fair share of challenges, including the recession, Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the BP oil spill in 2010, as well as floods and violent tornadoes in 2011. In the face of such adversities, the 1.3 million workers in the Mississippi job market are constantly redefining themselves. Today, Mississippi is attracting new businesses -- led by the government, retail, manufacturing and agriculture sectors -- that offer new jobs and higher wages.
Mississippi Job Opportunities
Agriculture and the state's 42,000 farms employ nearly 30 percent of the Mississippi workforce. Leading products include poultry, eggs, soybeans and forestry. Legalized casino gambling on the Mississippi River and several currently in-progress billion-dollar manufacturing and energy projects also support the economy.
Most jobs in Mississippi are provided by the government and the trade, transportation and utilities industries. While most sectors in Mississippi have reported mixed performance in job gains, the education/health services sector is showing positive momentum. In recent months, the financial sector has also reported positive job gains.
Mississippi Employment Trends
Mississippi's employment conditions reflect the challenges the state has weathered. From late 2009 to early 2012, the unemployment rate remained higher than 10 percent. The unemployment rate fell below 10 percent in February 2012 and continues to improve. On the other hand, Mississippi payrolls continue to fall, though at a slower rate since mid-2011. Some minor job growth was reported in September and November 2011. On a more positive note, online hiring has reported solid gains over the past year and is nearing prerecession levels.
Employment in Mississippi is expected to increase 1.3 percent between Q2 2012 and Q3 2013, on par with the 1.3 percent growth expected in the US job supply during that time, according to Moody's Analytics.