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News - Details
Date:May 20, 2022
Contact:LWC Public Affairs @ (225) 342-3035

Louisiana unemployment rate reaches lowest point ever recorded

BATON ROUGE, La. – Preliminary data released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports a not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for April 2022 of 3.5 percent, which is the lowest rate ever recorded in the series history dating back to 1976. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 4.1 percent is grouped among the lowest three monthly rates recorded.

“Louisiana has been no stranger to challenges these last two years but we keep coming out on the other side better and stronger,” said Louisiana Workforce Commission Secretary Ava Cates. “Not only have we come back from pandemic highs but we have hit a record low in our state’s unemployment history. Whether it’s working the frontlines of the pandemic or cleaning up after a disaster, the workforce continues to grow and strengthen.”

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for April 2022 has declined over the year for 14 consecutive months after peaking in April 2020. Louisiana’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined 0.1 percentage points from March 2022 and shows a 2.0 percentage point decline from April of last year. The labor force participation rate, which measures people ages 16 - 64 working or looking for work, continues to increase and is currently 58.9 percent, growing 0.3 percentage points from March 2022 and gaining 3.4 percentage points from April 2020.

Louisiana has also gained 200,600 jobs in seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment since April 2020 and has gained over-the-year for 13 consecutive months. The state’s seasonally adjusted total nonfarm employment for April 2022 is 1,910,100 jobs, a gain of 3,600 jobs from the revised March 2022 estimate of 1,906,500 jobs. When compared to April 2021, seasonally adjusted total nonfarm employment increased by 45,500 jobs.

Louisiana’s seasonally adjusted private sector employment for April 2022 is 1,602,400 jobs, an increase of 4,300 jobs from the March 2022 revised estimate of 1,598,100 jobs. When compared to April 2021, seasonally adjusted private sector employment increased by 51,500 jobs. This shows an over-the-year gain for 13 consecutive months.

Since March 2022, the number of seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 11,683 from 2,001,958 to 2,013,641 in April 2022. When compared to April 2021, the number of seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 71,444. The April 2022 figure shows the highest level of seasonally adjusted employed individuals since the May 2019 figure of 2,013,775.

Since March 2022, the number of seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 1,001 from 87,778 to 86,777 in April 2022. When compared to April 2021, the number of seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 38,845.

As of the week ending April 16, there are over 34,000 jobs available in Louisiana through https://www.louisianaworks.net/hire. LWC’s Hope Central Career Planning & Recovery System, powered by Kuder® offers free training sessions to help you develop the skills you need to get back to work or pursue a new career. Find a webinar to attend here.

Major industries that showed the largest gains for seasonally adjusted jobs over the month:

• Leisure and Hospitality gained 2,500 jobs from March 2022.

• Education and Health Services gained 1,800 jobs from March 2022.

• Other Services gained 1,500 jobs from March 2022.

Major industries that showed the largest gains for seasonally adjusted jobs over the year:

• Leisure and Hospitality gained 16,600 jobs from April 2021.

• Professional and Business Services gained 10,100 jobs from April 2021.

• Construction gained 6,900 jobs from April 2021.

Among Louisiana’s MSAs in April 2022, seasonally adjusted data shows:

• Alexandria (62,200 jobs) declined by 100 jobs from March 2022, but gained 1,500 jobs from April 2021.

• Baton Rouge (398,900 jobs) added 1,000 jobs from March 2022 and gained 8,600 jobs from April 2021.

• Hammond (47,000 jobs) added 300 jobs from March 2022 and gained 600 jobs from April 2021.

• Houma (80,600 jobs) added 200 jobs from March 2022, but lost 2,500 jobs from April 2021.

• Lafayette (201,200 jobs) added 400 jobs from March 2022 and gained 5,500 jobs from April 2021.

• Lake Charles (101,500 jobs) declined by 100 jobs from March 2022, but gained 6,200 jobs from April 2021.

• Monroe (75,400 jobs) declined by 200 jobs from March 2022, but gained 500 jobs from April 2021.

• New Orleans (550,100 jobs) declined by 2,100 jobs from March 2022, but gained 11,600 jobs from April 2021.

• Shreveport (175,600 jobs) added 500 jobs from March 2022 and gained 5,700 jobs from April 2021.

Not Seasonally Adjusted Data

Louisiana’s not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for April 2022 is 3.5 percent. This is tied with April 2006 and April 2008 for the lowest not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in the history of the series. The rate shows a decrease of 0.3 percentage points from the revised March 2022 not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 3.8 percent. The rate also shows a decrease of 2.4 percentage points from the April 2021 rate of 5.9 percent.

Since March 2022, the number of not seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 7,162 from 2,016,504 to 2,023,666 in April 2022. When compared to April 2021, the number of not seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 81,063.

Since March 2022, the number of not seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 6,668 from 80,599 to 73,931 in April 2022. When compared to April 2021, the number of not seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 47,162.

Louisiana’s not seasonally adjusted total nonfarm employment for April 2022 is 1,912,800, an increase of 7,100 jobs from the March 2022 revised estimate of 1,905,700. When compared to April 2021, not seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment increased by 43,200 jobs. The April 2022 employment figure shows 13 consecutive over-the-year gains.

Louisiana’s not seasonally adjusted total private employment for April 2022 is 1,602,300, an increase of 7,600 jobs from the March 2022 revised estimate of 1,594,700. When compared to April 2021, not seasonally adjusted private sector employment increased by 50,900 jobs. The April 2022 employment figure shows 13 consecutive over-the-year gains.

April 2022 metropolitan statistical area (MSA) and parish unemployment rates will be released on May 27, 2022.

Cates noted that the summer months generally signal a downturn in the tourism and education sectors, but those decreases are typical. “It is so important that everyone get their COVID-19 vaccine and their boosters. Those measures keep our economy moving,” said Cates.

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.

Note: This revision date does not reflect the revision date of the press release shown. Press Release postings are updated as needed and should be considered accurate as shown.