Labor force grows in metro area in November, jobless rate flat

Even as the non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for the Providence-Fall River-Warwick metro area stayed at 8.6 percent in November for the second consecutive month, the size of the labor force grew 0.8 percent to 691,500, according to a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report released Tuesday. More

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Labor force grows in metro area in November, jobless rate flat

THE SIZE OF THE LABOR FORCE in the Providence-Fall River-Warwick metro area grew from October to November on a non-seasonally adjusted basis, although it shrank from November 2012, according to the latest U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report released Tuesday.
Posted 1/7/14

WASHINGTON – Even as the non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for the Providence-Fall River-Warwick metro area stayed at 8.6 percent in November for the second consecutive month, the size of the labor force grew 0.8 percent to 691,500, according to a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report released Tuesday.

At the same time, even though the region’s jobless rate fell compared with a year earlier, when it was 9.4 percent, the labor force shrank over the year, from 700,200 to 691,500.

(Previously released seasonally adjusted unemployment numbers for Rhode Island showed the same trends, even as the numbers themselves were not identical. For instance, the not seasonally adjusted jobless rate was 8.4 percent in November, compared with the seasonally adjusted 9 percent that the state released Dec. 19. Similarly, the jobless rate saw a month-to-month decline in the most recent numbers, falling from a non-seasonally adjusted 8.5 percent in October, compared with a seasonally adjusted 9.2 percent in October.)

The state’s labor force saw similar moves in the recent numbers, rising up to 555,700 in November from a non-seasonally adjusted 552,600 in October.

The BLS noted that the highest metro area unemployment rates in November were in Yuma, Ariz., and El Centro, Calif., with 28.2 percent and 23.8 percent, respectively. Bismarck, N.D., at 2.3 percent, had the lowest jobless rate in the nation in November. Atlantic City-Hammonton, N.J., showed the largest year-over-year decline in unemployment rate, 4.7 percentage points, while Danville, Ill., exhibited the largest year-over-year growth in unemployment, 2.3 percentage points.

Regionally, the New Bedford metropolitan division saw a month-over-month decline in its jobless rate, 10.3 percent from 10.4 percent, but a year-over-year increase from 9.5 percent to the 10.3 percent in November. Its labor force increased by 800 from October to November, while remaining the same as a year earlier.

Similarly, Worcester saw a year-over-year increase in its unemployment rate of three-tenths of a percentage point to 7.1 percent in November but a decline of four-tenths of a percentage point from October. The Norwich-New London, Conn., metro area saw both year-over-year and month-over-month drops in the non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in November. Its 7.3 percent fell from 8.2 percent a year earlier and from 7.9 percent in October.

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