Unemployment rate falls to historic low in July

Washington state’s economy gained an estimated 6,600 jobs (seasonally adjusted) in July. Job growth was concentrated in the following industries: Leisure and hospitality, government, construction and information.

Also in July, the preliminary seasonally adjusted monthly unemployment rate decreased slightly from 3.8 percent to 3.7 percent. By comparison, the unemployment rate in July 2021 was 5.2 percent.

“The unemployment rate in Washington reached a new low based on a review of state records dating back to 1976 from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics,” said Paul Turek, the Employment Security Department’s (ESD) state economist.

“Labor demand over the summer has been strong, but the supply of workers is no longer growing like it was at the beginning of the year,” he said.

Clallam County’s unemployment rate is 4.7 percent — tied for 10th-highest among the state’s 39 counties.

ESD paid unemployment insurance benefits to 34,461 people in July, a decrease of 1,786 compared to the previous month. Decreases in paid claims within the construction and agriculture sectors contributed to an overall decrease in paid claims in July.

The national unemployment rate decreased slightly in July to a preliminary rate of 3.5 percent. For comparison, the national unemployment rate (revised) for July 2021 was 5.4 percent.

The state’s labor force in July was 4,030,800 — a decrease of 8,100 people from the previous month. Labor force is defined as the total number of people, both employed and unemployed, older than 16.

From July 2021 to July 2022, the state’s labor force increased by 114,000.

From June to July, the number of people who were unemployed statewide decreased from 155,400 to 149,300.