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Date:June 17, 2011
Contact:Public Relations @ (225) 342-3035

State Continues to Gain Private Sector Jobs in May

BATON ROUGE – Louisiana’s total nonfarm employment grew to 1,911,700 jobs in May, with an over-the-year increase of 19,000 jobs and an over-the-month gain of 10,100 jobs, according to figures reported today by the Louisiana Workforce Commission (LWC).

Seasonally adjusted results of a survey of Louisiana employers by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show private-sector jobs continue to drive the job growth. The number of private-sector jobs in Louisiana has grown 11,100 over the month and by 34,900 since May 2010, while there are 15,900 fewer government jobs in the state than a year ago.

Industry sectors with annual job gains were education and health services, 281,500, up 10,500 jobs over the year; leisure and hospitality, 202,400, up 9,100; manufacturing up 5,100 jobs to 143,600; trade, transportation, and utilities, 368,700, up 3,400 workers; information, 28,500, up 2,700 since May 2010; construction, up 1,400 jobs to 122,300; professional and business services, up 1,300 jobs to 193,800; mining and logging, 52,600, up 900 jobs; and other services, up 500 to 66,300. Financial activities remained unchanged at 92,500, while government had an over-the-year decrease of 15,900 workers to 359,500.

The May nonfarm estimates are the third monthly set produced by BLS using a new methodology that reduces state input and may result in an increase in variability from one month to the next.

“The survey results show the largest over-the-month nonfarm job increase for May since 1990,” said Curt Eysink, LWC executive director. "May is the eighth straight month that has shown over-the-year job growth, and that trend appears to be very solid.”

A separate BLS survey of households is used to estimate the state’s civilian labor force, the number of people employed and unemployed, and the unemployment rate. Louisiana’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in May increased slightly to 8.2 percent, while the national rate increased to 9.1 percent. Louisiana tied with Indiana for the 26th lowest unemployment rate in the nation and was the seventh lowest state in the Southern region. The Southern region rate for May was 8.8 percent.

According to this household survey, Louisiana’s seasonally adjusted civilian labor force -- the number of people working or looking for work -- for May 2011 was 2,060,707, a decrease of 6,550 from April. The number of people employed in May decreased 8,480 to 1,890,940. The number of unemployed in May increased, to 169,767.

Not seasonally adjusted statewide, metropolitan statistical area (MSA) and parish data will be released on Wednesday, June 22.

For more detailed information on May 2011 employment data for Louisiana, visit the LWC Web site at and select Labor Market Information from the top right-hand menu. Then select LOIS (Louisiana Occupational Information System) and Employment and Wage Data listed under Historical Data Analysis.

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