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District of Columbia Unemployment Rate at 6.5 Percent in September

Friday, October 22, 2021

Washington, DC – The District of Columbia’s Department of Employment Services reported today that the seasonally adjusted preliminary unemployment rate was 6.5 percent in September 2021; this was a decrease of 0.2 percentage points from the revised August 2021 rate of 6.7 percent.
 
“Today’s jobs report highlights the District of Columbia’s continued economic recovery from the pandemic,” said DOES Director Dr. Unique Morris-Hughes. “As Washingtonians continue going back to work and employers continue rehiring, DOES is here to support everyone’s fair shot at economic stability.”
 
The District’s preliminary September job estimates show an increase of 3,200 jobs, for a total of 750,800 jobs in the District. The private sector increased by 200 jobs.  The public sector increased by 3,000 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 1,900, from 382,100 in August 2021 to 384,000 in September 2021. The civilian labor force for the District increased by 1,100 from 409,700 in August 2021 to 410,800 in September 2021. The labor force participation rate increased by 0.2 percentage point from 70.0 percent in August 2021 to 70.2 percent in September 2021.
 
Employment Overview

  • v  Manufacturing sector remained the same, after remaining the same the prior month.  With employment at 1,000 jobs, jobs remained the same from a year ago.
  • v  Mining, Logging and Construction sector decreased by 200 jobs, after remaining the same the prior month.  With employment at 16,000 jobs, jobs increased by 500 or 3.23 percent from a year ago.
  • v  Trade, Transportation, and Utilities sector increased by 100 jobs, after decreasing by 200 jobs in the prior month.  With employment at 28,900 jobs, jobs increased by 800 or 2.85 percent from a year ago.
  • Information sector increased by 100 jobs, after a decrease of 300 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 18,800 jobs, jobs decreased by 700 or 3.59 percent from a year ago.
  • Financial Activities sector decreased by 200 jobs after an increase of 100 jobs in the prior month.   With employment at 27,800 jobs, jobs decreased by 1000 jobs or 3.47 percent from a year ago.
  • Professional and Business Services sector decreased by 2,000 jobs, after a decrease of 1,800 jobs in the prior month.  With employment at 165,300 jobs, jobs increased by 1,600 or 0.98 percent from a year ago.
  • Educational and Health Services sector increased by 1,200 jobs, after a decrease of 1,100 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 125,700 jobs, jobs increased by 2,900 or 2.36 percent from a year ago.
  • Leisure and Hospitality sector increased by 1,500 jobs, after an increase of 2,100 jobs in the prior month.  With employment at 55,400 jobs, jobs increased by 16,300 or 41.69 percent from a year ago.
  • Other Services sector decreased by 300 jobs, after a decrease of 500 jobs in the prior month.  With employment at 70,800 jobs, jobs decreased by 1,600 or 2.21 percent from a year ago.

 
Labor Force Overview

  • The number of employed District residents increased by 1,900 over the month to 384,000. The civilian labor force increased by 1,100 to 410,800.
  • One year ago, total employment was 372,300 and the civilian labor force was 407,900.

The number of unemployed was 35,600, and the unemployment rate was 8.7 percent.
 

NOTES: The September 2021 final and October 2021 preliminary unemployment rates, will be released on Friday November 19, 2021. Historical 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 determined 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.