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Washington Metro’s Unemployment at 10.1 Percent in April

Wednesday, June 3, 2020

(Washington, DC) - The District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (DOES) reported today that the preliminary April job estimates show a decrease of 250,800 jobs for a total of 2,499,600 jobs in the Washington Metropolitan Division. The private sector decreased by 234,000 jobs, while the public sector payrolls decreased by 16,800 jobs. The Washington Metropolitan Division's not seasonally adjusted April 2020 unemployment rate was 10.1 percent, which is up 6.7 percent from the March 2020 rate of 3.4 percent.  The Washington Metropolitan Division’s unemployment rate was 2.8 percent in April 2019, which was 7.3 percent lower than the current unemployment rate of 10.1 percent.

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

The total civilian labor force in the Washington Metropolitan Division for April 2020 was 2,682,000, of which 2,409,900 were employed and 272,100 were unemployed.  The unemployment rate was 10.1 percent.  The total civilian labor force in the Suburban Ring of the Communities surrounding the District of Columbia was 2,940,400, of which 2,665,100 were employed and 285,200 were unemployed.  The unemployment rate for this area was 9.7 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 3,343,600, of which 3,013,500 were employed and 330,000 were unemployed.  The unemployment rate for this area was 9.9 percent.  For the month, the unemployment rates for the Washington Metropolitan Division and the Suburban Ring increased by 6.7 percent, while the unemployment rate for the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area increased by 6.6 percent from the previous month’s rate.

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

The Washington Metropolitan Division’s civilian labor force decreased over the year by 59,900, while the number of employed decreased by 254,900, and the number of unemployed increased by 195,000.  The civilian labor force for the Suburban Ring decreased over the year by 84,700, while the number of employed decreased by 295,700, and the number of unemployed increased by 210,700.  Meanwhile, the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area’s civilian labor force decreased by 90,700, while the number of employed decreased by 325,700 and the number of unemployed increased by 234,800.  For the year, the unemployment rate for the Washington Metropolitan Division increased by 7.3 percent, the unemployment rate for the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area increased by 7.1 percent and the unemployment rate for the Suburban Ring increased by 7.2 percent from a year ago.

Metropolitan Division’s Job Growth

Total wage and salary employment in the Washington Metropolitan Division decreased over the month by 250,800 jobs. The private sector decreased by 234,000 jobs, while the public sector decreased by 16,800 jobs over-the-month. Nine private sectors had over-the-month job loss. Job decreases were registered in: manufacturing decreased (-2,500 jobs); mining, logging and construction decreased (-5,900 jobs); trade transportation & utilities decreased (-41,100 jobs); information decreased (-1,700 jobs); financial activities decreased (-2,300 jobs); professional and business services decreased (-10,400 jobs); educational and health services decreased (-39,700 jobs); leisure and hospitality decreased (-123,500 jobs) and other services decreased (-6,900 jobs). Government overall decreased by 16,800 jobs over the month. The federal government increased by 1,100 jobs, while state government decreased by 4,000 jobs, and the local government decreased by 13,900 jobs.

During the last 12 months, employment in the Washington Metropolitan Division decreased by 239,100 jobs. The private sector decreased by 229,200 jobs, while the public sector decreased by 9,900 jobs. The private sector gain over the year was: information gained (1,000 jobs). The private sector losses were registered in: manufacturing (-2,000 jobs); mining, logging and construction (-5,100 jobs); trade, transportation and utilities (-36,800 jobs); financial activities   (-1,100 jobs); professional and business services (-6,100 jobs); educational and health services   (-41,800 jobs); leisure and hospitality services (-133,000 jobs) and other services (-4,300 jobs). The Federal government shows an increase of 3,200 jobs, while State government decreased by 1,200 jobs and the local government decreased by 11,900 jobs.

Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area Explanations

Estimated Labor Force and Employment for the Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV Metropolitan Divis33,000ion includes: The District of Columbia, Virginia Cities of Alexandria, Fairfax, Falls Church, Fredericksburg, Manassas, Manassas Park and the Virginia Counties of Arlington, Clarke, Fairfax, Fauquier, Loudon, Prince William, Spotsylvania, Stafford, Warren, Rappahannock and Culpeper; 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 2019 annual benchmark revisions.
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