Thursday, March 22, 2012

State unemployment rate is the lowest in three years

A bit more good news about Washington’s economy – we added about 4,200 new jobs last month, according to the state’s Employment Security Department.

Industries with the most job growth in February were leisure & hospitality, which added 2,500 jobs; construction, up 1,900 jobs; retail trade, up 1,700; transportation, warehousing & utilities, up 1,500; and professional & business services, which added 1,100 jobs.

Some sectors lost jobs, too: government, down 1,400; manufacturing, down 900; other services, down 800; financial activities, down 700; and information, down 500.

Even with those losses, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped to 8.2 percent in February, down from a revised rate of 8.4 percent in January. That’s the lowest unemployment rate since January 2009, when it was 7.7 percent.

Since the low point in the recession, the state has regained about 90,900 jobs.

An estimated 288,000 people (seasonally adjusted) in Washington were unemployed and looking for work in February, and about 197,000 claimed unemployment benefits. As of March 17, 76,103 workers in Washington had run out of all unemployment benefits.

Here is more information on the latest numbers and/or for help finding a job.

Charts: WA Employment Security Department
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