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BATON ROUGE – Louisiana experienced a 9,400-job increase in the seasonally adjusted number of nonfarm jobs from July to August 2008. This was the biggest month-to-month increase in the country, the Louisiana Workforce Commission announced today.
The August nonfarm job total of 1,956,300 also represents an increase of 1.2 percent, or 23,500 jobs, over August 2007. Nonfarm statistics are estimated from an employer-based sample survey by place of work.
Louisiana’s unemployment rate for August 2008 was 4.7 percent, up from both the July 2008 revised rate of 4.0 percent and the year-ago figure of 3.7 percent. Louisiana is among 44 states where the unemployment rate increased month-to-month. The state’s rate is 16th lowest in the country. The August 2008 unemployment rate for the United States was 6.1 percent, up from July’s rate of 5.7 percent.
Louisiana’s civilian labor force - the number of people working or looking for work - for August 2008 was 2,048,815, up from the July revised figure of 2,010,247. The number of employed in August was 1,952,642, an increase from 1,930,801 in July. The number of unemployed in Louisiana in August 2008 rose to 96,173 from 79,446 for the previous month. Civilian labor force statistics are estimated from a residential-based sample survey by place of residence.
“The tremendous growth in jobs, as well as the number of people working or looking for work, are more signs that our economy is strong,” said Tim Barfield, Executive Director of the Louisiana Workforce Commission. “We’re also seeing a continuation of the growth trend in goods producing jobs, which typically pay more and put people on better career paths than service-providing jobs.”
Unadjusted unemployment rates are used to compare parishes and metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) to the state. The August 2008 unadjusted unemployment rate for Louisiana was 5.0 percent, up from the revised July 2008 rate of 4.4 percent. Lafourche and Terrebonne Parishes had the lowest unemployment rate of 3.2 percent in August 2008, while East Carroll Parish had the highest rate of 11.6 percent. Please see page three for the MSA rates.
Preliminary seasonally adjusted statewide total nonfarm employment for August 2008 was 1,956,300, up 9,400 from the revised July 2008 figure of 1,946,900. The sector breakdown was as follows: natural resources and mining, 51,700 employed in August 2008, up from 51,600 in July 2008; construction, 139,500, up from 139,200; manufacturing, 157,100, up from 156,800; trade, transportation, and utilities, 386,100, up from 385,500; information, 26,500, up from 25,800; financial activities, 96,500, down from 96,600; professional and business services, 203,800, up from 203,500; educational and health services, 255,600, up from 253,600; leisure and hospitality, 199,400, up from 199,100; other services, 69,700, up from 69,100; and government, 370,400, up from 366,100.
Each of the eight MSAs posted nonfarm employment gains over the month. Within the MSAs, major industry sector gains overshadowed job losses contributing to the over-the-month increase. The New Orleans MSA had the greatest monthly job growth adding 1,600 nonfarm jobs, followed by the Lafayette MSA that recorded an increase of 1,100 jobs from July 2008.
For more detailed information on August 2008 employment data for Louisiana, visit our Web site at http://www.LAWORKS.net and select Labor Market Information from the left-side menu. Then select Monthly Employment Bulletin – Workforce At A Glance or Monthly Employment Statistics Press Release for the latest monthly nonfarm and labor force data.
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