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Washington Metro Economy Thrives, Adds 12,300 Jobs in October

Thursday, November 30, 2017

(Washington, DC) The District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (DOES) reported today that the preliminary October 2017 job estimates show an increase of 12,300 jobs for a total of 2,697,400 jobs in the Washington Metropolitan Division. The private sector increased by 9,700 jobs, while the public sector gained 2,600 jobs. The Washington Metropolitan Division's not seasonally adjusted October 2017 unemployment rate was 3.8 percent, which is unchanged from the September rate of 3.8 percent. The Washington Metropolitan Division’s unemployment rate was 4.0 percent in October 2016, which is down 0.2 percentage points from the current unemployment rate of 3.8 percent.

Over-the-Month Area Civilian Labor Force, Employment and Unemployment Data
The total civilian labor force in the Washington Metropolitan Division for October 2017 was 2,692,200, of which 2,590,900 were employed and 101,300 were unemployed. The unemployment rate was 3.8 percent. The total civilian labor force in the Suburban Ring of the Communities surrounding the District of Columbia was 2,993,200, of which 2,897,100 were employed and 96,000 were unemployed. The unemployment rate for this area was 3.2 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 3,394,300, of which 3,270,700 were employed and 123,500 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 Washington Statistical Area was unchanged and the unemployment rate for the Suburban Ring increased by 0.1 percentage point.

Over-the-Year Area Civilian Labor Force, Employment and Unemployment Data
The Washington Metropolitan Division’s civilian labor force increased over the year by 41,000, while the number of employed increased by 44,900, and the number of unemployed decreased by 3,900. The civilian labor force for the Suburban Ring increased over the year by 50,700, while the number of employed increased by 59,800, and the number of unemployed decreased by 9,200. Meanwhile, the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area’s civilian labor force increased by 57,100, while the number of employed increased by 62,100 and the number of unemployed decreased by 5,100. For the year, the unemployment rate for the Washington Metropolitan Division declined by 0.2 percentage points while unemployment rate for the Washington Metropolitan Statistical Area declined by 0.3 percentage points and the Suburban Ring declined by 0.4 percentage points.

Metropolitan Division’s Job Growth
Total wage and salary employment in the Washington Metropolitan Division increased over the month by 12,300 jobs. The private sector increased by 9,700 jobs, while the public sector increased by 2,600 jobs over-the-month. Four private sectors, along with the federal and local government had over-the-month job gains. Job gains were registered in educational and health services which gained (5,900 jobs); professional and business services gained (3,600 jobs); trade, transportation, and utilities gained (2,400 jobs); and other services gained (700 jobs). Four private sectors along with the state government had over-the-month job losses. Job losses was registered in mining, logging and construction which lost (400 jobs); information lost (500 jobs); leisure and hospitality lost (1,700); and financial activities lost (300 jobs). Manufacturing had no over-the-month job change. Government overall gained (2,600 jobs) over the month. State government lost (400 jobs), while the federal government increased by (300 jobs), and the local government increased by (2,700 jobs).

During the last 12 months, employment in the Washington Metropolitan Division increased by 37,000 jobs. The private sector added 37,600 jobs, while the public sector lost 600 jobs. Professional and business services reported the greatest year-over growth, up 13,600 jobs. Six other private sector industries along with the local government posted year-over job gains: Educational and health services gained (7,600 jobs); other services gained (3,200 jobs); leisure and hospitality gained (6,000 jobs); trade, transportation and utilities gained (4,700 jobs); mining, logging and construction gained (3,100 jobs); and financial activities gained (1,500 jobs). Information recorded the greatest year-over downturn, down 1,700 jobs. One other private sector along with the federal and state government had year-over losses: Manufacturing lost (400 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 2016 annual benchmark revisions.