Unemployment rate drops again, falls to record low

  • Wednesday, March 11, 2020 1:30am
  • Business

Washington state’s economy gained 6,800 jobs in January and the state’s seasonally adjusted monthly unemployment rate for January fell to 3.9 percent, according to the Employment Security Department.

“Strong hiring of household members moved the state’s low unemployment rate even lower” said Paul Turek, economist for the department.

“A mild contraction in the state’s labor force added to the downward push.”

The Employment Security Department released the preliminary job estimates from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics as part of its Monthly Employment Report.

Clallam County’s unemployment rate is at 7.4 percent, 11th-highest among the state’s 39 counties.

The department also announced that December’s previously reported unemployment rate of 4.3 was confirmed. December’s preliminary estimated gain of 10,900 jobs was revised to a gain of 12,300 jobs.

The national preliminary unemployment rate was 3.6 percent in January 2020. In January 2019, the national unemployment revised rate was 4.0 percent.

Employment Security paid unemployment insurance benefits to 77,784 people in January.

The state’s labor force in January was 3,955,200 – a decrease of 1,600 people from the previous month. In the Seattle/Bellevue/Everett region, the labor force decreased by 5,100 over the same period.

From January 2019 through January 2020, the state’s labor force grew by 119,400 and the Seattle/Bellevue/Everett region increased by 42,200.

The labor force is the total number of people, both employed and unemployed, over the age of 16.

9 industry sectors expand, 4 contract

Private sector employment increased by 5,700 while the public sector increased by 1,100 jobs in January. This month’s report shows the largest private job growth occurred in retail trade up 3,300 jobs, leisure and hospitality up 2,300 jobs, professional and business services up 1,900 jobs and information up 1,200 jobs.

Also posting increases were manufacturing up 800 jobs, transportation, warehousing and utilities up 400 jobs and both mining and logging and education and health services up 100 jobs.

The four industry sectors that posted losses were construction down 3,500 jobs, other services down 600 jobs, wholesale trade down 200 jobs and financial activities down 100 jobs.

Washington added an estimated 79,400 new jobs from January 2019 through January 2020, not seasonally adjusted. The private sector grew by 2.6 percent, up an estimated 74,000 jobs, while public sector employment rose 0.9 percent with a net gain of 5,400 jobs.

From January 2019 through January 2020, twelve out of the thirteen major industries added jobs while one sector contracted.

The three industry sectors with the largest employment gains year-over-year, not seasonally adjusted, were:

• Professional and business services, with 14,000 new jobs;

• Education and health services, with 12,200 new jobs; and,

• Leisure and hospitality, with 11,700 new jobs.

More in Business

Abby Garcia displays products at her parents’ Jose’s Famous Salsa booth at the Sequim Farmers & Artisans Market in 2010. Photo courtesy of Angela Garcia
What’s Happening At Market: Looking back at one of market’s great success stories

Sequim Farmers & Artisans Market Open: 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturdays in late… Continue reading

Business briefs – March 25, 2020

Windermere donates to Sequim Community Aid The Windermere Real Estate offices in… Continue reading

Business briefs — March 18, 2020

RE/MAX added staffer RE/MAX Prime announced the hiring of Dianna DaSilva to… Continue reading

Salvatore Zambito sits in his new yoga studio, the Yoga-Sūtras Institute at 128 W Bell St. He will be celebrating the studio’s grand opening on March 21. Sequim Gazette photo by Conor Dowley
A full yoga experience is coming to Sequim

The Yoga-SÅ«tras Institute will be about more than just stretches

Milestone: Sequim GM Merrigan earns governor’s recognition

Nancy Merrigan, general manager of the Quality Inn in Sequim was honored… Continue reading

Unemployment rate drops again, falls to record low

Washington state’s economy gained 6,800 jobs in January and the state’s seasonally… Continue reading

State unemployment figure falls to new low

Washington state’s economy gained 10,900 jobs in December and the state’s seasonally… Continue reading

Business briefs — Feb. 19, 2020

New digs for H&R Block The Sequim H&R Block has moved to… Continue reading

Business news — Feb. 5, 2020

Cedarbrook sets grand opening Cedarbrook Lavender Gift Shop hosts a Grand Opening… Continue reading

Business spotlight: Business buzzing, growing for Sequim Bee Farm

Good Food Awards recognizes couple seventh time in five years

Business news — Jan. 29, 2020

Steffes gets high honors in essential oils competition Susan Steffes of Fleurish… Continue reading