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District’s Unemployment Rate Drops to 8.1 Percent

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

District’s Unemployment Rate Drops to 8.1 Percent

District of Columbia Unemployment Rate Is 0.5 Percentage Points Lower Than Previous Month
Washington, DC – The District of Columbia Department of Employment Services reported today that the preliminary December  job estimates show a decrease of 2,300 jobs, for a total of 734,700 jobs in the District. The private sector lost 2,700 jobs, while the public sector payrolls increased by 400 jobs. The numbers are drawn from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) through its monthly survey of the District of Columbia’s employers.  
 
The District’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in December was 8.1 percent, which is 0.5 percentage points lower than the revised November rate of 8.6 percent. The number of unemployed District residents decreased by 1,700 from 31,200 in November 2013 to 29,500 in December 2013.
 
Based on more complete reporting from employers, previously released November estimates were revised upward to show an over-the-month (October-November) total non-farm employment decrease of 500 jobs. The November revised unemployment rate stays at 8.6 percent.
 
Employment Overview
 
  • Trade, Transportation, and Utilities increased by 500 jobs, after a gain of 600 jobs in November. With employment at 28,300, jobs are up by 400 or 1.4 percent from a year ago.
  • Professional and Business Services increased by 100 jobs, after an increase of 900 jobs in November. With employment at 157,100, jobs are up by 1,700 or 1.1 percent from a year ago.
  • Leisure and Hospitality decreased by 1,000 jobs, after a drop of 600 jobs in November. With employment at 68,600, jobs are up by 3,900 or 6.0 percent over the year.
  • Financial Activities decreased by 100 jobs, after an increase of 400 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 29,200, jobs are up by 700 or 2.5 percent from one year ago.
  • Educational and Health Services decreased by 1,400 jobs, after having no change in jobs in the prior month. With employment at 119,100, jobs are up by 400 or 0.3 percent from a year ago. 
  • Other Services decreased by 400 jobs, after a drop of 600 jobs the prior month. With employment at 68,300, jobs are down by 700 or -1.0 percent from a year ago.
  • Construction decreased by 400 jobs, after a loss of 100 jobs in November. With employment at 12,700, jobs are down by 700 or -5.2 percent from a year ago.
  • Information had no over-the-month job change, after having no change in jobs in November. At 16,300, employment is down by 600 jobs or -3.6 percent from one year ago.
  • Manufacturing had no over-the-month job change, after having no change in jobs the prior month. With employment at 900, there was no change in jobs from one year ago.
Labor Force Overview

  • The number of employed District residents increased by 4,200 over the month to 336,800. The civilian labor force increased by 2,400 to 366,300.
  • One year ago, total employment was 339,400 and the civilian labor force was 370,700.  The number of unemployed was 31,300, and the unemployment rate was 8.4 percent.
 
NOTES: The December 2013 final and January 2014 preliminary unemployment rate and survey of jobs data for the District will be released on Monday, March 17, 2014. Historical jobs and labor force estimates for the District of Columbia and detailed labor market information click here.
 
Technical Notes: Estimates of industry employment and unemployment levels are arrived through the use of two different monthly surveys. 
 
Industry employment data are derived through the Current Employment Statistics (CES) survey, a monthly survey of business establishments conducted by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of the US Department of Labor, which provides estimates of employment, hours, and earnings data broken down by industry for the nation as a whole, all states, and most major metropolitan areas (often referred to as the “establishment” survey). 
 
Resident employment and unemployment data are mainly derived from the District’s portion of the national Current Population Survey (CPS), a household survey conducted each month by the US Census Bureau under contract with BLS, which provides input to the Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program (often referred to as the “household” survey). 
 
Both industry and household estimates are revised each month based on additional information from updated survey reports compiled by BLS. In addition, these estimates are benchmarked (revised) annually based on actual counts from the District’s Unemployment Compensation Law administrative records and other data.
 
Data reflects 2012 annual benchmark revisions.
 
Industry employment data is not seasonally adjusted.