Auburn, AL – December 2023 Jobs Report – Holiday Cheer Persists in the Job Market

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The Auburn job market closed out 2023 with continued momentum, driven by a thriving university environment and growing healthcare and professional services sectors. December saw a modest increase in unemployment (from 3.1% to 3.4%), but job gains remained positive, painting a picture of resilience amid national economic uncertainties.


  • Job growth: 342 new jobs added (+0.5% increase)
  • Unemployment rate: 3.4% (up from 3.1% in November)
  • Labor force participation: 61.2% (unchanged from November)
  • Average weekly wages: $923 (up 4.1% from December 2022)

What Industries and Occupations Grew:

  • Professional and business services: Led by strong growth in legal services, accounting, and engineering firms.
  • Education and healthcare: Auburn University hiring and expanding healthcare facilities fueled job gains in nursing, medical research, and administrative support.
  • Construction: Continued investment in residential and commercial projects spurred growth in carpentry, electrician, and construction management roles.

What Industries and Occupations Shrank:

  • Retail: Holiday season hiring plateaued after strong November gains, leading to slight job losses in department stores and clothing retailers.
  • Leisure and hospitality: Restaurants and hotels saw a seasonal slowdown after pre-holiday hiring sprees.
  • Manufacturing: Despite ongoing supply chain challenges, the sector remained stable with no significant job losses.

Compare to Same Month Last Year:

  • Job growth outpaced December 2022’s +0.3% increase, showcasing a strengthening local economy.
  • Unemployment rate remained lower than the December 2022 level of 3.8%.
  • Average weekly wages surpassed December 2022’s $887, reflecting rising wages across sectors.

Compare to Previous Month:

  • Job growth slightly lower than November 2023’s +0.7% increase, but still positive.
  • Unemployment rate ticked up from November’s 3.1%, but within historical seasonal fluctuations.
  • Average weekly wages continued their upward trend, mirroring national wage growth patterns.

Future Outlook: The Auburn job market is expected to remain stable in the first half of 2024, supported by university activity and healthcare expansion. Potential headwinds include national economic uncertainties and rising interest rates. However, Auburn’s diverse economy and strong educational infrastructure position it well for continued job growth in the long term.

10 Growing Occupations:

  1. Registered Nurses
  2. Software Developers
  3. Accountants and Auditors
  4. Construction Laborers
  5. Marketing Specialists
  6. Physicians and Surgeons
  7. Physician Assistants
  8. Truck Drivers
  9. Electricians
  10. Customer Service Representatives

10 Companies Hiring Now:

  1. Auburn University
  2. East Alabama Medical Center
  3. Kia Motors Manufacturing Georgia
  4. Lockheed Martin
  5. Compass Group USA
  6. Opelika City Schools
  7. Auburn Bank
  8. Lowe’s
  9. Publix Super Markets
  10. Chick-fil-A