Trendsights Newsletter

Council for Community and Economic Research Upcoming Webinars
C2ER's webinar series connect economic development practitioners and labor market information analysts with timely information on trending topics, new resources, and best practices.
Small Business Openings & Revenue
Since the novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, pandemic emerged as a global health concern, many efforts have focused on containing and treating the disease. At the same time, states and municipalities must manage how to reopen their economies. This Missouri Economy Indicators series will highlight data and resources that businesses and policymakers can use to navigate this evolving situation.
Business Index Rises
Missouri’s Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for June was 50.5, an increase of 8.2 points from May, and in expansion territory, according to the monthly Mid-America Business Conditions Survey, conducted by Creighton University, Omaha, NE.
Research for Recovery
The COVID-19 pandemic created an unprecedented shock to the economy, impacting the workforce and companies across sectors. This page contains new and relevant research created to assist with economic recovery, along with links to quickly navigate to other relevant resources.
Free Business Startup Boot Camp
With 40 million people out of work across the country, and spring graduates trying to enter the job market, Global Silicon Valley and American City Business Journals are partnering on a free seven-week “Startup Boot camp.” The camp is designed to train a new entrepreneurial army to help restart the national economy. The program begins July 20 and concludes August 31 (Register at the site
Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey
The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) from the Bureau of Labor Statistics is a monthly survey developed to address the need for data on job openings, hires, and separations.
In-Demand Programming Languages
Information Technology occupations are some of the most in-demand occupations in Missouri. From March 1, 2019 through February 29, 2020 there were over 54,000 job ads for select information technology occupations. The Computer Programming Languages brief breaks down the programming languages and skills sought after by employers in Missouri.
Virtual Job Fair
Workforce Developers will be interested in assisting businesses and employers in the two virtual job fairs to safely connect Missouri employers with job seekers. The first virtual job fair will take place on Wednesday, July 22, from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. The second will be Wednesday, Aug. 5, from 2-5 p.m. Job seekers can see job listings by industry, view participating employers, and join an employer’s “chat room” to hear more about their company and available job openings. OWD will host presentations about resume writing and interview tips each hour during the job fairs. Employers wishing to participate should register at by July 13
Certification-Attainment Matters to Missouri Workforce
Approximately 3.2% of Missouri workers hold a non-degree license compared to 1.7% nationally, while 5.3% of Missouri's labor force with a degree holds a license compared with 3.2% of US workers.
Fun Facts for the 4th of July
Three-quarters (76%) of consumers plan to celebrate Independence Day in 2020. This year’s Fourth of July may be celebrated differently but still include various festivities like fireworks, food, and time with family. The National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics Survey predicts those celebrating the holiday will spend $76. Total food purchases for the nation’s holiday are estimated to top $6.52 billion. The Office of Performance and Strategy and the Missouri Economic Research and Information Center has brought you some fun facts to enjoy during the summer holiday.
Census Household Pulse Survey
The US Census Bureau, collaborating with 5 federal agencies, is in a unique position to produce data on social and economic effects of COVID-19 on American households. Data on issues ranging from employment income, food and housing insecurity, and K-12 educational changes are addressed in this survey. Information for the state, nation, and some MSAs can be accessed through an interactive tool, data tables, and public use file by clicking the buttons at the bottom of the page.
Return Strong
The Missouri Department of Higher Education & Workforce Development launched its Return Strong initiative in mid-May to help with economic recovery efforts as part of Gov. Mike Parson’s “Show Me Strong” recovery plan. Return Strong is focused on two main objectives: helping Missourians skill up and get back to work, and safely and responsibly reopening Missouri’s public workforce system.
Census Small Business Pulse Survey
The Business Pulse survey complements existing US Census Bureau data collections, providing high-frequency, detailed information on small businesses. Results from the survey can be used by policymakers as they seek to address challenges faced by small businesses, by researchers studying the impact and responses to COVID-19, and businesses as they make decisions. Use the dropdown boxes to find responses to the survey questions each week, and scroll over Missouri on the map for state information.
County Average Wages
County average wage figures are derived from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages, a cooperative program between the US Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Missouri Department of Higher Education & Workforce Development. These wages represent an average for all industries, both public and private.
Missouri First Quarter Cost of Living
Missouri had the 6th lowest cost of living in the United States for 2020. In general, the most expensive areas to live were Hawaii, Alaska, the Northeast, and the West Coast. The least expensive areas were the Midwest and Southern states. For the past 13 quarters, Missouri has been in the top 10 for lowest cost of living in the nation.
Short-term Projections Now Available
The Office of Performance and Strategy and Missouri Economic Research and Information Center (MERIC) have recently released short-term projections for Missouri, Kansas City and St. Louis. Did you know that the fastest growing occupation in Missouri is Personal Care Aides with projected growth of 4,388 jobs over the 3 year period, a 6.4% increase, and an average annual wage of $23,020? Click on the above link to access the entire list of short-term projections, or summaries of Top Openings and Fastest Growing Occupations.
Top Missouri 50 Employers
The annual Top 50 Private Sector Employer list has been updated through 2019. This list is based on the number of employees a business had during a selected quarter and is developed using a combination of Bureau of Labor Statistics Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages data and InfoUSA collections.
WIOA County Demographics
The latest demographic data for 2018 is now available at the state, county, and Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) region levels in an Excel file format. Click on the above link to download the data.
Burning Glass Report: Getting America Back to Work after the Pandemic
Burning Glass Technologies has released a report detailing trends in job ads during March and April, the time period when many workers became unemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Burning Glass Technologies has identified jobs that employers are advertising now for near-term employment based on its database of more than a billion job postings and resumes worldwide.
Top Ten Cities with Lowest Cost of Living Includes Joplin Missouri 
The Cost of Living Index measures regional differences in the cost of consumer goods and services, excluding taxes and non-consumer expenditures. See a sneak peek of first quarter Cost of Living for the nation by clicking on the top link. 
Census New Business Formations and Pulse Surveys Will be Updated Weekly
The U.S. Census Bureau recognizes the need for accurate, real-time data on the U.S. population and economy during this COVID-19 pandemic. Census will release data weekly to understand how individuals and businesses are weathering the current crisis and provide data to assist in the decision-making processes of state and local communities.
Show Me Strong: Missouri's Recovery Plans
Missouri’s Show Me Strong Recovery Plan is based on four guiding principles: expanding testing capacity, expanding reserves of personal protective equipment (PPE), monitoring health care system capacity, and improving the ability to predict potential outbreaks in the state. Visit this website for guidelines, resources and frequently asked questions for businesses, communities and citizens as part of the strategic reopening of the economy.
Census 2020 Responses - Missouri Counties
Census results shape the future of communities, as census data informs how billions of dollars in federal funds are distributed for health clinics, school lunch programs, disaster recovery initiatives, and other critical programs and services for the next 10 years. The Census Bureau is challenging citizens to complete the census to help ensure a complete and accurate count in 2020. St. Charles County leads Missouri with a response rate of 76.2% followed by Christian County (73.2%) and Cass County (69.2%). Click on the above link to see the Missouri map and county response rates.
Occupational Handbook: Customer Service Representatives
Customer service representatives interact with customers to handle complaints, process orders, and answer questions. Typical job training includes a high school diploma and on-the-job training. Common skills for customer service representatives are communication and computer skills. Customer service representatives in Missouri earn on average, $35,020.