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Washington Metro Division Unemployment Rate Stays at 5.1 Percent

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Washington Metro Division Unemployment Rate Stays at 5.1 Percent

The civilian labor force for the Suburban Ring increased over the year by 32,500.

(Washington, DC) - The District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (DOES) reported today that the preliminary November job estimates show an increase of 11,100 jobs for a total of 2,486,500 jobs in the Washington Metropolitan Division. The public sector increased by 3,200 jobs, accompanied by an increase of 7,900 private sector jobs. The Washington Metropolitan Division's not seasonally adjusted November 2012 unemployment rate was 5.1 percent; this was unchanged from the October revised rate of 5.1 percent.

Over-the-Month Area Civilian Labor Force, Employment and Unemployment Data

The total civilian labor force in the Washington Metropolitan Division for November 2012 was 2,573,600, of which 2,443,300 were employed and 130,300 were unemployed. The unemployment rate was 5.1 percent.  The total civilian labor force in the Suburban Ring of the communities surrounding the District of Columbia was 2,873,200, of which 2,740,800 were employed and 132,400 were unemployed. The unemployment rate for this area was 4.6 percent. In the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area, which includes the Washington Metropolitan Division and the Bethesda-Gaithersburg-Frederick, Maryland Metropolitan Division, the civilian labor force was 3,237,600, of which 3,075,200 were employed and 162,400 were unemployed. The unemployment rate for this area was 5.0 percent. For the month, the unemployment rate for the Metropolitan Division was unchanged, while the unemployment rates for the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area and the Suburban Ring decreased by 0.1 percentage point each.

Over-the-Year Area Civilian Labor Force, Employment and Unemployment Data

The Washington Metropolitan Division’s civilian labor force increased over the year by 41,600, while the number of employed increased by 49,700, and the number of unemployed decreased by 8,100. The civilian labor force for the Suburban Ring increased over the year by 32,500, while the number of employed increased by 35,800, and the number of unemployed decreased by 3,300. Meanwhile the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area’s civilian labor force increased by 54,400, while the number of employed increased by 61,600, and the number of unemployed decreased by 7,200.  For the year, the unemployment rate for the Metropolitan Division decreased by 0.4 percentage points, the unemployment rate for the Metropolitan Statistical Area decreased by 0.3 percentage points, and the unemployment rate for the Suburban Ring decreased by 0.2 percentage points.

Metropolitan Division’s Job Growth

Total wage and salary employment in the Washington Metropolitan Division increased over the month by 11,100 jobs. The private sector increased by 7,900 jobs, and the public sector increased by 3,200 jobs. Four private sectors along with the state and local government had over-the-month job gains. Meanwhile, four sectors along with the federal government had over-the-month job losses. Job gains were registered in financial activities, which gained 700 jobs; educational and health services gained 900 jobs; trade, transportation, and utilities gained 10,700 jobs; and other services gained 100 jobs. Job losses were registered in mining, logging, and construction which lost 1,800 jobs; professional and business services lost 700 jobs; leisure and hospitality lost 1,400 jobs; and manufacturing lost 600 jobs. Information had no over-the-month job change. Government increased by 3,200 jobs. State government gained 2,400 jobs, while the federal government lost 300 jobs, and the local government gained 1,100 jobs.

During the last 12 months, employment in the Washington Metropolitan Division increased by 21,200 jobs. The private sector added 16,100 jobs, while the public sector gained 5,100 jobs. Educational and health services reported the greatest year-over growth, up 9,200 jobs. Five other private sector industries posted year-over job gains: financial activities (up 4,700 jobs); leisure and hospitality (up 400 jobs); professional and business services (up 1,700 jobs); other services (up 700 jobs) and trade, transportation, and utilities (up 900 jobs). Mining, logging, and construction recorded the greatest year-over downturn, down 1,100 jobs. Two other private sector industries posted year-over job losses: information (down 100 jobs) and manufacturing (down 300 jobs).  

Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area Explanations

Estimated Labor Force and Employment for the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV Metropolitan Division includes: The District of Columbia, Virginia Cities of Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church, Fredericksburg, Manassas, and the Virginia Counties of Arlington, Clarke, Fairfax, Loudon, Prince William, Spotsylvania, Stafford, and Warren County; the Maryland Counties of Calvert, Charles, and Prince Georges; and the West Virginia County of Jefferson.

The estimates for the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV Metropolitan Statistical Area will be the summation of the estimates for the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV Metropolitan Division (contained in this release) and the Bethesda-Gaithersburg-Frederick, MD Metropolitan Division (to be released by the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation).

Data reflects the 2011 annual benchmark revisions.

Announcement: Changes to the Procedures for Producing Current Employment Statistics (CES) State Estimates

Production of March Preliminary Current Employment Statistics Data

The production of State and metropolitan area Current Employment Statistics (CES) estimates has transitioned from State Workforce Agencies to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) with the production of preliminary estimates for March 2011.  Concurrent with this transition, the BLS will implement several methodological changes to standardize the estimation approach across States.  While these changes will reduce the potential for statistical bias in state and metropolitan area estimates, they may increase the month-to-month variability of the estimates.  More detailed information on the changes to procedures for producing CES estimates is available on the 

BLS Web site.