Washington State jobless rate jumps to 7.7 percent
King 5 News
Washington state's unemployment rate increased to 7.7 percent in June,
the highest level since April 2002, the Employment Security department
The increase of three-tenths of a percentage point contrasts with
other signs that the economy is strengthening, Employment Security
Commissioner Sylvia Mundy said.
"While some sectors are showing signs of recovery, businesses
overall are not yet convinced that demand will be sufficient to justify
hiring," Mundy said.
The national jobless rate increased by a similar amount to 6.4 percent.
In neighboring Oregon, the unemployment rate for June was 8.5 percent,
the highest in nearly 17 years.
The rise in Washington state's rate, when adjusted for normal seasonal
variation, was caused by a decrease in current employment rather than
an increase in job seekers, Mundy explained.
Although the state lost 700 more jobs in the struggling aerospace
industry, most job losses came from normal seasonal layoffs in education,
which shed more than 7,000 jobs for the summer.
Normal seasonal gains continued in tourism, construction and retail
trade. The state added 6,000 leisure and hospitality jobs, the department
Compared to June of last year, there was virtually no change in overall
non-farm employment, the department reported, although the manufacturing
sector lost 20,700 jobs during the year. Construction, financial activities,
education and health services, and leisure and hospitality all showed
growth over the last 12 months.