does

Department of Employment Services
 

DC Agency Top Menu

-A +A
Bookmark and Share

DC Unemployment Rate at 7.8 Percent in March

Monday, April 19, 2021

(Washington, DC)  – The District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (DOES) reported today that the seasonally adjusted preliminary unemployment rate was 7.8 percent in March 2021; a decrease of 0.3 percentage points from the revised February 2021 rate.

“The District economy continues to show gains toward recovery,” said DOES Director Dr. Unique Morris Hughes. “Our top priority is ensuring Washingtonians have access to the resources and tools to help them secure sustainable work and achieve economic stability.” The District’s preliminary March job estimates show an increase of 1,800 jobs, for a total of 730,900 jobs in the District. The private sector increased by 1,500 jobs.  The public sector increased by 300 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 number of employed District residents increased by 200 from 375,200 in February 2021 to 375,400 in March 2021. The civilian labor force for the District decreased by 1,500 from 408,400 in February 2021 to 406,900 in March 2021. The labor force participation rate declined by 0.3 percentage points from 69.9 percent in February 2021 to 69.6 percent in March 2021.

Employment Overview

  • Manufacturing sector remained the same, after remaining the same the prior month.  With employment at 1,000 jobs, jobs decreased by 200 or 16.67 percent from a year ago.
  • Mining, Logging and Construction sector remained the same, after no changes the prior month.  With employment at 15,300 jobs, jobs remained the same from a year ago.
  • Trade Transportation and Utilities sector decreased by 200 jobs, after an increase of 400 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 29,000 jobs, jobs decreased by 3,700 or 11.31 percent from a year ago.
  • Information sector increased by 100 jobs, after remaining the same in the prior month. With employment at 19,200 jobs, jobs decreased by 1,500 or 7.25 percent from a year ago.
  • Financial Activities sector decreased by 100 jobs after a decrease of 100 jobs in the prior month.   With employment at 27,700 jobs, jobs decreased by 2,100 jobs or 7.05 percent from a year ago.
  • Professional and Business Services sector decreased by 400 jobs, after an increase of 500 jobs in the prior month.  With employment at 163,900 jobs, jobs decreased by 10,000 or 5.75 percent from a year ago.
  • Educational and Health Services sector decreased by 200 jobs, after an increase of 2,100 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 125,300 jobs, jobs decreased by 8,300 or 6.21 percent from a year ago.
  • Leisure and Hospitality sector increased by 2,200 jobs, after an increase of 2,100 jobs in the prior month.  With employment at 40,100 jobs, jobs decreased by 37,100 or 48.06 percent from a year ago.
  • Other Services sector increased by 100 jobs, after a decrease of 600 jobs in the prior month.  With employment at 69,700 jobs, jobs decreased by 7,900 or 10.18 percent from a year ago.

Labor Force Overview

  • The number of employed District residents increased by 200 over the month to 375,400. The civilian labor force decreased by 1,500 to 406,900.
  • One year ago, total employment was 398,900 and the civilian labor force was 420,600.

The number of unemployed was 21,700, and the unemployment rate was 5.2 percent.

NOTES: The March 2021 final and April 2021 preliminary unemployment rates will be released on Friday May 21, 2021. Historica1 jobs and labor force estimates for the District of Columbia and detailed labor market information is available here.

Technical Notes: Estimates of industry employment and unemployment levels are arrived 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 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 2020 annual benchmark revisions.
Industry employment data is not seasonally adjusted.