State's Unemployment Rate Rises In April

Washington unemployment rate drops to 4.6 percent

Washington state's unemployment rate is at its lowest since June 2007, after falling from 4.7 to 4.6 percent in April, according to the Employment Security Department (ESD).

The state has added an estimated 76,500 jobs since April 2016, with the private sector adding 61,700 jobs and the public sector gaining 14,800. Oregon's rate was significantly below its year-ago rate of 5.0 percent in April 2016. The decline was due to the creation of more than 37,000 new jobs. A total of 2.3 lakh jobs were added to the eight sectors covered in the quarterly survey including manufacturing, construction, trade, transport, accommodation and restaurants, IT/BPO, education and health.

"Though April nonfarm job estimates fell by 1,500 we are still well ahead of last year's pace", Andy Condon, director of the state Department of Labor's Office of Research, said in a statement.

Akers said that the unemployment rate increased because more people are entering the labor market. The rise reflects more people returning to the workforce in recent weeks because those not looking for work are not counted in unemployment totals.

Education and health services faced the biggest reduction in April, losing 1,200 jobs. Sectors that gained in include construction, other services, and leisure and hospitality. While wage growth is picking up, it's well below where the Federal Reserve would like to see it - 3.5%.

The Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford market recorded the largest job loss, down 1,000 positions, while the Norwich-New London-Westerly and Waterbury markets also lost positions in April.

Of particular concern is youth unemployment, which remains stubbornly high at 21.8%, one of the highest rates in the Eurozone. Trade, transportation and utilities lost 1,400 posts. Over the past 12 months, however, this sector has increased by 7,900 jobs or 3.7 percent.

The mining and logging and information sectors were flat.

Kentucky's statewide unemployment rate and employment levels are seasonally adjusted.

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