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Washington Metro’s Unemployment Rate at 3.5 Percent

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

(Washington, DC) - The District of Columbia’s Department of Employment Services (DOES) reported today that the preliminary March job estimates show an increase 7,800 jobs for a total of 2,678,100 jobs in the Washington Metropolitan Division. The private sector increased by 8,700 jobs, while the public sector decreased by 900 jobs. The Washington Metropolitan Division's not seasonally adjusted March 2022 unemployment rate was 3.5 percent, which was 0.1 percentage point lower than the revised February 2022 rate of 3.6 percent.  The Washington Metropolitan Division’s unemployment rate was 5.2 percent in March 2021, which was 1.7 percentage points higher than the current unemployment rate of 3.5 percent.

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

The total civilian labor force in the Washington Metropolitan Division for March 2022 was 2,707,000, of which 2,612,800 were employed and 94,200 were unemployed.  The unemployment rate was 3.5 percent.  The total civilian labor force in the Suburban Ring of the Communities surrounding the District of Columbia was 3,009,400, of which 2,910,500 were employed and 98,800 were unemployed.  The unemployment rate for this area was 3.3 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 3,396,100, of which 3,275,300 were employed and 120,700 were unemployed.  The unemployment rate for this area was 3.6 percent.  For the month, the unemployment rates for the Washington Metropolitan Division and the Suburban Ring decreased by 0.1 percentage point and the unemployment rate for the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area was unchanged 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 increased over the year by 46,800, while the number of employed increased by 90,700, and the number of unemployed decreased by 43,900.  The civilian labor force for the Suburban Ring increased over the year by 49,500, while the number of employed increased by 101,200, and the number of unemployed decreased by 51,800.  Meanwhile, the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area’s civilian labor force increased by 59,200, while the number of employed increased by 101,200 and the number of unemployed decreased by 51,800.  For the year, the unemployment rate for the Washington Metropolitan Division and the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area decreased by 1.7 percentage points, while the unemployment rate for the Suburban Ring declined by 1.8 percentage points from a year ago.

Metropolitan Division’s Job Growth

Total wage and salary employment in the Washington Metropolitan Division increased over the month by 7,800 jobs. The private sector increased by 8,700 jobs, while the public sector decreased by 900 jobs over-the-month. Seven private sectors had over the month job gains. Job gains were registered in manufacturing (600 jobs); mining, logging and construction (1,900 jobs); information (1,000 jobs); professional and business services (2,800 jobs); educational and health services (1,100 jobs); leisure and hospitality (2,800 jobs) and other services (600 jobs).  One private sector had over-the-month job losses.  The job decrease was registered in trade, transportation and utilities (-2,100 jobs). Financial activities remained the same.  Government overall decreased by 900 jobs over the month. The federal government decreased 1,300 jobs, state government increased by100 jobs and the local government increased by 300 jobs.

During the past 12 months, employment in the Washington Metropolitan Division increased by 90,500 jobs. The private sector increased by 84,300 jobs, while the public sector increased by 6,200 jobs. Job increases were registered in manufacturing (500 jobs); mining, logging & construction (2,400 jobs); trade, transportation, and utilities (10,400 jobs); information (1,700 jobs) professional and business services (15,700 jobs); educational and health services (600 job); leisure and hospitality services (52,100 jobs) and other services (2,600 jobs). The private sector loss was registered in financial actGovernment overall increased by 6,200 jobs.  Federal government shows a decrease of 500 jobs, State government increased 100 jobs and the local government increased 6,600 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, 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 2021 annual benchmark revisions.
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