Job increase fails to budge July unemployment rate

Despite an estimated increase of 5,700 jobs last month, Washington’s unemployment rate in July remained unchanged at 9.3 percent, according to the state’s Employment Security Department.

  • Monday, December 19, 2011 12:47pm
  • Business

Despite an estimated increase of 5,700 jobs last month, Washington’s unemployment rate in July remained unchanged at 9.3 percent, according to the state’s Employment Security Department.

The holding pattern occurred after June’s unemployment rate was revised upward from an original estimate of 9.2 percent. Job growth in June also was revised upward, from 3,600 to 4,700.

“When the unemployment rate refuses to budge, people tend to not notice that we’ve added jobs for 11 months straight,” said Dave Wallace, the acting chief economist for Employment Security. “The job gains have been steady, but not enough to chip away at the unemployment rate.”

Industries that posted gains in July were leisure and hospitality, which added 1,700 jobs; manufacturing, up 1,600; retail trade, up 1,200; transportation, warehousing and utilities, up 1,200; professional and business services, up 1,100; financial activities, up 1,000; construction, up 800; and government, up 500.

Jobs were lost in other services, down 2,200, and information, down 1,000.

Year over year, more than 37,000 jobs have been added in Washington. This includes a gain of 46,000 private-sector jobs and a loss of 8,800 government jobs.

An estimated 311,027 people (not seasonally adjusted) in Washington were unemployed and looking for work in July, and 185,358 of them received unemployment benefits. As of Aug. 6, 60,432 workers in Washington had run out of all unemployment benefits.


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