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Washington Metro’s Unemployment Rate at 4.0 percent

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

(Washington, DC) - The District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (DOES) reported today that the preliminary June job estimates show an increase of 22,400 jobs for a total of 2,672,900 jobs in the Washington Metropolitan Division. The private sector increased by 22,700 jobs, while the public sector declined by 300 jobs. The Washington Metropolitan Division's not seasonally adjusted June 2016 unemployment rate was 4.0 percent, which is up 0.4 percentage points from the May rate of 3.6 percent. The Washington Metropolitan Division unemployment rate was 4.7 percent in June 2015, but has since decreased by 0.7 percentage points over-the-year.

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

The total civilian labor force in the Washington Metropolitan Division for June 2016 was 2,640,200, of which 2,535,000 were employed and 105,200 were unemployed.  The unemployment rate was 4.0 percent.  The total civilian labor force in the Suburban Ring of the Communities surrounding the District of Columbia was 2,923,600, of which 2,817,300 were employed and 106,300 were unemployed.  The unemployment rate for this area was 3.6 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 3,323,000, of which 3,192,300 were employed and 130,800 were unemployed.  The unemployment rate for this area was 3.9 percent.  For the month, the unemployment rates for the Washington Metropolitan Division and the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area increased by 0.4 percentage points each, while the unemployment rate for the Suburban Ring increased by 0.3 percentage points.

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

The Washington Metropolitan Division’s civilian labor force increased over the year by 17,500, while the number of employed increased by 36,700, and the number of unemployed decreased by 19,200. The civilian labor force for the Suburban Ring increased over the year by 6,900, while the number of employed increased by 27,600, and the number of unemployed decreased by 20,700.  Meanwhile, the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area’s civilian labor force increased by 15,800, while the number of employed increased by 39,600 and the number of unemployed decreased by 23,700.  For the year, the unemployment rate for the Washington Metropolitan Division decreased by 0.7 percentage points, while the unemployment rates for the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area and the Suburban Ring decreased by 0.8 percentage points each.

Metropolitan Division’s Job Growth

Total wage and salary employment in the Washington Metropolitan Division increased over the month by 22,400 jobs. The private sector increased by 22,700 jobs, and the public sector decreased by 300 jobs over the month.   Eight private sectors along with the federal and local government had over-the-month job gain. Job gains were registered in other services which gained (1,400 jobs); trade, transportation, and utilities gained (3,200 jobs); manufacturing gained (400 jobs); financial activities gained (400 jobs); leisure and hospitality gained (8,800 jobs); professional and business services gained (4,700 jobs); information gained (1,100 jobs); and  mining, logging and construction gained (3,100 jobs). One private sector along with state government had over-the-month job losses. Job loss was registered in educational and health services which lost (400 jobs). Government overall  lost (300 jobs) over the month. State government lost (5,600 jobs), while the federal government increased  by (2,700 jobs), and the local government increased by (2,600 jobs).

During the last 12 months, employment in the Washington Metropolitan Division increased by 71,000 jobs. The private sector added 62,500 jobs, while the public sector gained 8,500 jobs. Professional and business services reported the greatest year-over growth, up 19,100 jobs. Six other private sector industries along with the federal, state and local government posted year-over job gains: Educational and health services gained (13,500 jobs); mining, logging and construction gained (6,700 jobs); other services gained (1,800 jobs); leisure and hospitality gained (11,500 jobs); trade, transportation and utilities gained (12,200 jobs); and manufacturing gained (100 jobs). Information recorded the greatest year-over downturn, down 1,500 jobs. Financial activities lost (900 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 2015 annual benchmark revisions.