Anchorage unemployment in July was 5.1 percent, according to the latest employment report released by the Anchorage Economic Development Corp. and sponsored by First National Bank Alaska. This rate shows a 0.5 percent drop from June’s revised rate and remains well below the national rate of 6.5 percent and the statewide rate of 6.1 percent.
“Anchorage unemployment last month was at the lowest July rate we’ve seen since 2007,” said Bill Popp, AEDC president and CEO. “We typically see a decrease in the unemployment rate for the month of August as summer employment reaches its peak. This summer’s pattern has closely resembled last year’s trend, and we anticipate the rate to drop below 5 percent for much of the second half of the year.”
The average monthly employment from January to July increased by 457 jobs compared to the same months in 2013. Anchorage’s private sector has seen an increase of 1,100 jobs so far this year, while government employment has declined by 643 jobs, with losses split between federal employment and local education.
The number of goods-producing jobs has been steadily increasing, and is showing a gain of 100 jobs year-to-date. The largest contributing factor has been an increase in the mining and logging industry, which includes oil and gas employment, with an increase of 143 new jobs compared to the 2013 year-to-date monthly average.
The information industry leads the service sector with a growth rate of 2.63 percent so far this year. If the last five months of 2014 mirror the last five months of 2013, the information industry will end the year with more growth than in any year over the past decade. Retail trade jobs in Anchorage also continue to show excellent growth, with 614 more jobs year-to-date than at the same time last year. Health care remains one of the fastest growing service-providing industries, with 286 more jobs year-to-date than in 2013.
Juneau man’s dessert wins Alaska business pitch competition
Aug. 1, 2014, ANCHORAGE, Alaska – While they rode the Alaska Railroad from Anchorage to Whittier yesterday, five entrepreneurs presented their business models, funding needs and market research to a panel of judges alongside a live audience. Hosted by the Anchorage Economic Development Corp., the Pitch-on-a-Train competition brought ideas that ranged from commercial Bitcoin applications to drone surveillance technology, but it was Marc Wheeler of the Juneau café Coppa who wooed the judges most with his rhubarb sherbet.
AEDC’s Pitch-on-a-Train wrapped up a week’s worth of events aimed at cultivating entrepreneurship and innovation in the Last Frontier. The train provided a networking venue for local business leaders, as well as an opportunity for select entrepreneurs to share their ideas and receive feedback from a panel of judges that included special guest Terry Jones, former chief information officer for American Airlines and founder of travel websites Travelocity.com and Kayak.com.
The five Alaska entrepreneurs were nominated to make their pitch at the event, which included a 10-minute presentation in front of the panel and a question and answer session. In addition to Jones, judges included representatives from the State of Alaska, Municipality of Anchorage, angel investment firms, Wells Fargo and business consultants.
"The energy behind entrepreneurship in Alaska has been amazing,” said Bill Popp, president and CEO of AEDC. “We provided a platform and many Alaskans responded with innovative ideas and spirit that will continue to contribute to our growing economy."
Marc Wheeler of Coppa, an ice cream shop and café in Juneau, presented his idea of dramatically expanding his existing business by adding a mobile location that would meet more than 1 million cruise ship passengers at the Juneau dock each summer. Wheeler’s pitch included the addition of distinctly Alaska-inspired ice cream flavors, along with the locally sourced ingredients that visitors and community members are looking for. Coppa is not only known for its rhubarb sherbet, but for flavors that include Alaska raspberry, Alaska cherry and Alaskan Brewing Co. Smoked Porter brownie and pecan.
“Not having a taste of our rhubarb sherbet when visiting Alaska would be like not trying gelato on a trip to Italy,” Wheeler told the panel of judges.
After providing the panel with a sample of the rhubarb sherbet, the judges were convinced and named Wheeler the winner of AEDC’s 2014 Pitch-on-a-Train. In addition to business coaching by the panel, Wheeler was awarded 50,000 American Airlines Miles sponsored by Terry Jones, 25,000 Alaska Airlines Miles sponsored by GCI and a three-month membership to The Boardroom, a co-working space in Anchorage with plans to expand to Juneau in 2015.
July 30, 2014 -
VIDEO AVAILABLE! Click here to watch video and slides from the 2014 3-Year Outlook Luncheon. Thank you to The Chariot Group and Sonic Foundry, Inc. for capturing the event and making it available online.
The AEDC 3-Year Economic Outlook examines economic trends based on historical data, interviews with representatives of businesses and organizations in various sectors, and current events. It discusses trends in terms of eight key indicators: population, employment, personal income, air passenger and freight volumes, building permits, Port of Anchorage tonnage, visitor industry activity, and oil prices.
To view the report in its entirety, please click here or on the report below.
AEDC released the Anchorage Consumer Optimism Index (ANCi) for Q2 of 2014 at the luncheon. Anchorage consumer optimism reached an all-time high in Q2 of 2014. The ANCi report is compiled by Northern Economics and sponsored by KeyBank.
To view the full ANCi Report, click here or on the report below.
Alaska Innovator: Making Waves AEDC is pleased to release the first issue of the Alaska Innovator for 2014! Thank you to Alaska Journal of Commerce for partnering with AEDC on this great publication! Click here or the image below to flip through the magazine. If you are interested in getting a copy of the magazine, contact AEDC: 907-258-3700.
Did you attend the 3-Year Outlook Luncheon? What did you think? Who would you like to see as a future presenter? We want to hear from you! Click here to take a quick survey on the event.
Prezi of the presentation is available now. Click through below to view the slides.