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DC Economy Adds 5,000 Jobs in October

Friday, November 16, 2018

(Washington, DC) The District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (DOES) reported today that the seasonally adjusted preliminary unemployment rate was 5.6 percent in October; this was a decrease of 0.1 percentage point from the reported September rate.

The Districts preliminary October job estimates show an increase of 5,000 jobs, for a total of 799,500 jobs in the District. The private sector increased by 5,000 jobs while the public sector remained the same as the previous month as 236,700 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.

“As the District continues to experience a robust economic growth, the Bowser Administration remains committed to ensuring Washingtonians have access to the tools and resources needed to place them on a pathway to the middle class,” said DOES Acting Director Dr. Unique Morris-Hughes. “We remain encouraged by the growth of our local economy, and steadfast in our commitment to creating opportunities for District residents to achieve economic prosperity.”

The number of employed District residents was down 1,200 from 383,600 in September 2018 to 382,400 in October 2018. The civilian labor force for the District was down 1,400 from 406,600 in September to 405,200 in October. The labor force participation rate was down 0.3 percentage points from 70.4 percent in September to 70.1 percent in October.

Employment Overview

  • Educational and Health Services sector increased by 3,200 jobs, after an increase of 8,900 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 137,500 jobs, jobs decreased by 2,500 or 1.79 percent from a year ago.
  • Financial Activities sector remained the same, after not having an over- the- month change.  With employment at 31,800 jobs, jobs are up by 1,600 or 5.30 percent from a year ago.
  • Information sector increased by 400 jobs, after an increase of 200 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 19,500 jobs, jobs are up by 1,500 or 8.33 percent from a year ago.
  • Manufacturing sector remained the same, after not having an over-the-month change. With employment at 1,400 jobs, jobs are up by 100 or 7.69 percent from a year ago.
  • Construction sector remained the same, after not having an over-the-month change. With employment at 16, 200 jobs, jobs are up by 600 or 3.85 percent from a year ago.
  • Trade, Transportation and Utilities sector increased by 500 jobs, after not having an over-the-month change the prior month. With employment at 34,000 jobs, jobs are up by 400 or 1.19 percent from a year ago
  • Other Services sector increased by 400 jobs, after a decrease of 1,000 jobs the prior month. With employment at 75,200 jobs, jobs are up by 800 or 1.08 percent from a year ago.
  • Professional and Business Services sector increased by 100 jobs, after an increase of 600 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 167,700 jobs, jobs are up by 200 or 0.12 percent from a year ago.
  • Leisure and Hospitality sector increased by 400 jobs, after an increase of 1,300 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 79,500 jobs, jobs are up by 1,300 or 1.66 percent over the year.

Labor Force Overview

  • The number of employed District residents decreased by 1,200 over the month to 382,400. The civilian labor force decreased by 1,400 to 405,200.
  • One year ago, total employment was 377,600 and the civilian labor force was 401,400. The number of unemployed was 23,800, and the unemployment rate was 5.9 percent.

NOTES: The October 2018 final and November 2018 preliminary unemployment rate and survey of jobs data will be released on Friday, December 21, 2018. Historical jobs and labor force estimates for the District of Columbia and detailed labor market information is available at: http://does.dc.gov/page/labor-statistics

Technical Notes: Estimates of industry employment and unemployment levels arrive through the use of two different monthly surveys.

Industry employment data is derived from 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 Districts 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 Districts Unemployment Compensation Law administrative records and other data.

Data reflects 2017 annual benchmark revisions.

Industry employment data is not seasonally adjusted.