News
Date:September 17, 2021
Contact:LWC Public Affairs @ (225) 342-3035

Louisiana unemployment rate at 6.2%

BATON ROUGE, La. – Preliminary data for August 2021 released today by the Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS) shows that Louisiana added 1,900 seasonally adjusted nonfarm jobs from July 2021. The August estimate of 1,849,100 is the highest employment figure for the state since the March 2020 pre-pandemic figure of 1,971,100 jobs. The figure also shows a gain of 41,800 jobs from August 2020.

Louisiana’s seasonally adjusted total private-sector employment also showed gains both over the month and over the year. The August 2021 estimate of 1,534,800 shows an increase of 1,200 jobs from the July 2021 revised figure of 1,533,600. The series has added 46,800 jobs from the August 2020 figure of 1,488,000.

Since August 2020, the number of seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 13,191 from 1,924,464 to 1,937,655 in August 2021. When compared to July 2021, the number of seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 4,430.

Since August 2020, the number of seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 43,342 from 171,696 to 128,354 in August 2021. When compared to July 2021, the number of seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 7,866.

The August 2021 seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 6.2 percent shows a decline both over the month and over the year. The rate dropped 0.4 percentage points from the revised July 2021 rate of 6.6 percent and 2.0 percentage points from the August 2020 rate of 8.2 percent.

“These numbers don’t reflect the reality of the situation we find ourselves in today,” said LWC Secretary Ava Cates. “People are still suffering after Hurricane Ida, and we are in the middle of hurricane season. We have a lot of work to do to make sure people can still find work in our state and have the money they need to get them through difficult times.”

Industries that showed the largest gains for seasonally adjusted jobs from August 2020:

• Leisure and Hospitality gained 24,900 jobs from August 2020.

• Education and Health Services gained 10,000 jobs from August 2020.

• Professional and Business Services gained 8,100 jobs from August 2020.

• Construction gained 2,100 jobs from August 2020.

Among Louisiana’s MSAs in August 2021, seasonally adjusted data shows:

• Alexandria (60,400 jobs) lost 200 jobs from July 2021, but gained 1,100 jobs from August 2020.

• Baton Rouge (386,700 jobs) lost 300 jobs from July 2021, but gained 5,900 jobs from August 2020.

• Hammond (46,000 jobs) showed no change from July 2021, but gained 1,100 jobs from August 2020.

• Houma (82,600 jobs) showed no change from July 2021, but gained 2,400 jobs from August 2020.

• Lafayette (192,600 jobs) showed no gain from July 2021, but gained 5,100 jobs from August 2020.

• Lake Charles (93,200 jobs) added 100 jobs from July 2021 and gained 400 jobs from August 2020.

• Monroe (74,200 jobs) lost 300 jobs from July 2021, but gained 300 jobs from August 2020.

• New Orleans (531,500 jobs) added 2,000 jobs from July 2021 and gained 12,800 jobs from August 2020.

• Shreveport (169,200 jobs) added 500 jobs from July 2021 and gained 3,700 jobs from August 2020.

Not Seasonally Adjusted Data

Since August 2020, not seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment increased by 42,000 jobs from 1,799,100 to 1,841,100 in August 2021. When compared to July 2021, not seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment increased by 3,000 jobs.

Since August 2020, not seasonally adjusted private sector employment increased by 47,200 jobs from 1,489,000 to 1,536,200 in August 2021. When compared to July 2021, not seasonally adjusted private sector employment decreased by 400 jobs.

Louisiana’s not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for August 2021 is 5.5 percent, a decrease of 2.8 percentage points from the August 2020 not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 8.3 percent. The rate also shows a decrease of 0.8 percentage points from the July 2021 rate of 6.3 percent.

Since August 2020, the number of not seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 19,873 from 1,927,224 to 1,947,097 in August 2021. When compared to July 2021, the number of not seasonally adjusted employed individuals decreased by 10,149.

Since August 2020, the number of not seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 60,500 from 174,030 to 113,530 in August 2021. When compared to July 2021, the number of not seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 18,836.

August metropolitan statistical area (MSA) and parish unemployment rates will be released on September 24, 2021. The 2021 state and MSA data release schedule is now available. To view, please click here.

Seasonally Adjusted vs. Not Seasonally Adjusted Data

Jobs and employment trends data are often difficult to understand because there are two different ways to look at the data, seasonally or non-seasonally adjusted data.

Seasonal adjustment works to measure and remove the influences of predictable seasonal patterns to reveal how employment and unemployment figures change from month to month. Not seasonally adjusted data retains seasonal employment trends.

Over the course of a year, the labor force size, available jobs and employment rates undergo predictable fluctuations due to seasonal changes in weather, harvests, major holidays, and school schedules. Seasonal adjustment reduces the impact of these changes, making it easier to understand trends. Seasonally adjusted data is best utilized when comparing several months of employment and jobs data, while not seasonally adjusted data is best used to compare over-the-year trends. Seasonally adjusted data are useful for comparisons among states and the nation.

The Louisiana Workforce Commission primarily uses seasonally adjusted data because it provides a more useful and telling picture of Louisiana’s jobs and employment situation.

To view all available employment data, visit Louisiana’s employment homepage at http://www.laworks.net and select Labor Market Information from the top-right menu. Then, select LOIS (Louisiana Occupational Information System) and select Employment and Wage Data listed under Data Trends. To view the BLS Local Area Unemployment Statistics for the state, visit http://data.bls.gov/pdq/querytool.jsp?survey=la. For BLS nonfarm employment data, click here: http://data.bls.gov/pdq/querytool.jsp?survey=sm..

Data Considerations

All data published from the Bureau of Labor Statistics is preliminary and is subject to revision on a monthly, quarterly, and annual basis. Revised numbers for previous months are available from the BLS databases located on bls.gov. The revised numbers are available upon release of new data.

Resources for Employers and Job Seekers

Job-seekers can explore careers, apply for top-rated jobs and connect with local training providers using Louisiana Star Jobs, the LWC’s free career tool, at http://www.laworks.net/Stars/. Employers looking for workers should visit Louisiana’s employment homepage at http://www.laworks.net. Click on HiRE (Helping Individuals Reach Employment) and create an account allowing access to qualified job seekers.

About the Louisiana Workforce Commission

The Louisiana Workforce Commission is an agency of state government that administers programs designed to enhance workforce growth and provide family-sustaining jobs for Louisiana residents. The commission monitors employment, administers unemployment compensation and tax funds, provides training resources for employers and employees and oversees worker compensation benefits. The agency also gathers and supplies information on the labor market and occupational sectors in Louisiana.

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