Categorized | Business

Unemployment rate drops to 5.7% in September


The state Department of Labor & Industrial Relations has announced the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for September was 5.7 percent, down from 6.1 percent in August.

The last time Hawaii had an unemployment rate as low as 5.7 percent was in December 2008.

Statewide, there were 604,000 employed and 36,650 unemployed in September, for a total seasonally adjusted labor force of 640,650.

Nationally, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 7.8 percent, a decline from 8.1 percent in August.

Initial claims and weeks claims for unemployment benefits were down 9.4% and 13.2%, respectively compared to one year ago. Between August and September, initial claims increased by 0.2% while weeks claims dropped by 5.6%.

The unemployment rate figures for the state and the U.S. in this release are seasonally adjusted, in accordance with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) methodology. The not seasonally adjusted rate for the State declined to 5.6 percent in September from the 5.7 percent in August.

Industry Payroll Employment (Establishment Survey)

In another measure of employment, total seasonally adjusted nonagricultural jobs expanded for the third consecutive month, increasing by 2,300 in September over August.

Within industry sectors, private industry employment gains were experienced in Education & Health Services (+1,300), Leisure & Hospitality (+800), and Manufacturing (+100).

Strong hiring in Hospitals and Ambulatory Care Services provided a boost in Health Services, while a brisk visitor industry resulted in a rise in staffing in the Leisure & Hospitality sector.

Jobs in Financial Activities and Other Services remained stable.

Over-the-month job contraction occurred in Trade, Transportation, & Utilities (-100), Construction (-400), and Professional & Business Services (-500). Government employment went up by 1,000 jobs, in part due to high enrollment in the University of Hawaii system, along with its recently opened new West Oahu campus.

Compared with September 2011, total seasonally adjusted nonfarm jobs have expanded by 12,300, with the most prominent major industry increases in Leisure & Hospitality (+5,200), Trade, Transportation, & Utilities (+2,900), and Educational & Health Services (+2,000).

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