The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


September 21, 2012

State unemployment rate climbs to 8.1 percent

HARRISBURG — Pennsylvania’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 8.1 percent in August, up two-tenths of a percentage point from the July rate of 7.9 percent.

The state’s unemployment rate equaled the U.S. rate in August and has been at or below the U.S. rate for 70 consecutive months, the state Department of Labor and Industry reported on Friday.

The new rate is the same as in August 2011.

Meanwhile, the state’s seasonally adjusted civilian labor force — the number of people working or looking for work — was down 3,000 in August to 6,475,000.

Resident employment was down 19,000 to 5,950,000, and the number of unemployed residents was up 16,000 to 525,000. Pennsylvania’s labor force was 105,000 above its August 2011 level.

Seasonally adjusted total nonfarm jobs in Pennsylvania fell for a fifth straight month, down 1,200 in August to 5,708,900. Since March, jobs were down 19,400, but this followed a two-month increase of 27,400 in February and March. Goods-producing jobs were down 2,100 while service-providing jobs increased by 900. The largest drop from July was in construction, down 3,300, while the largest increase was in leisure & hospitality, up 2,200. Professional & business services reached a record high of 722,500 jobs in August. Additionally, manufacturing added 1,600 jobs in August, the sixth increase in 2012.  

Pennsylvania’s job count was up 15,600 (0.3 percent) over the year, with increases in both goods-producing and service-providing industries. Manufacturing jobs were up 5,400 (1.0 percent) from last August.


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