Unemployment rates lower in August in most metropolitan areas

U.S. jobless rate 7.3 percent in August 2013; 8.2 percent in August 2012

WASHINGTON (Oct. 21, 2013) — Unemployment rates were lower in August than a year earlier in 311 of the 372 metropolitan areas, higher in 47 areas, and unchanged in 14 areas, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Twenty-eight areas had unemployment rates of at least 10 percent, and 41 areas had rates of less than 5 percent. Two hundred and eighty-eight metropolitan areas had over-the-year increases in nonfarm payroll employment, 72 had decreases, and 12 had no change. The national unemployment rate in August was 7.3 percent, not seasonally adjusted, down from 8.2 percent a year earlier.

Metropolitan area unemployment (not seasonally adjusted)

Help-WantedYuma, Ariz., and El Centro, Calif., had the highest unemployment rates in August, 32.6 percent and 26.3 percent, respectively. Bismarck, N.D., had the lowest rate, 2.4 percent. A total of 207 areas had August unemployment rates below the U.S. figure of 7.3 percent, 158 areas had rates above it, and 7 areas had rates equal to that of the nation.

El Centro, Calif., had the largest over-the-year unemployment rate decrease in August (-5.6 percentage points). Twenty-two other areas had rate declines of at least 2.0 percentage points, and an additional 113 areas had declines between 1.0 and 1.9 points. Yuma, Ariz., had the largest over-the-year jobless rate increase (+2.0 percentage points). No other area had an increase larger than 0.8 percentage point.

Of the 49 metropolitan areas with a Census 2000 population of 1 million or more, Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, Calif., had the highest unemployment rate in August, 10.4 percent. Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, Minn.-Wis., and Oklahoma City, Okla., had the lowest rates among the large areas, 4.7 percent each. Forty-three of the large areas had over-the-year unemployment rate decreases, five had increases, and one had no change. The largest rate decline occurred in Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, Calif. (-2.2 percentage points). No large area had a jobless rate increase greater than 0.3 percentage point.

Metropolitan division unemployment (not seasonally adjusted)

Eleven of the most populous metropolitan areas are made up of 34 metropolitan divisions, which are essentially separately identifiable employment centers. In August, Detroit-Livonia-Dearborn, Mich., and Lawrence-Methuen-Salem, Mass.-N.H., had the highest jobless rates among the divisions, 11.1 percent each. Bethesda-Rockville-Frederick, Md., had the lowest unemployment rate, 5.2 percent.

Twenty-eight metropolitan divisions had over-the-year jobless rate decreases in August, while three had increases and three had no change. Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach-Deerfield Beach, Fla., and West Palm Beach-Boca Raton-Boynton Beach, Fla., had the largest rate declines from a year earlier (-1.9 percentage points each). Thirteen other divisions had rate decreases of 1.0 percentage point or more. No division had an unemployment rate increase greater than 0.3 percentage point.

Metropolitan area nonfarm employment (not seasonally adjusted)

In August, 288 metropolitan areas had over-the-year increases in nonfarm payroll employment, 72 had decreases, and 12 had no change. The largest over-the-year employment increases occurred in New York- Northern New Jersey-Long Island, N.Y.-N.J.-Pa. (+172,800), Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas (+111,000), and Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, Calif. (+84,500). The largest over-the-year percentage gain in employment occurred in Naples-Marco Island, Fla. (+6.3 percent), followed by Winchester, Va.-W.Va. (+5.8 percent), and Lafayette, Ind., and Odessa, Texas (+5.2 percent each).

The largest over-the-year decrease in employment occurred in Cleveland- Elyria-Mentor, Ohio (-7,900), followed by Bloomington, Ind. (-4,000), and Peoria, Ill. (-3,500). The largest over-the-year percentage decreases in employment occurred in Bloomington, Ind. (-5.0 percent), Lawrence, Kan. (-4.4 percent), and Panama City-Lynn Haven-Panama City Beach, Fla. (-3.6 percent).

Over the year, nonfarm employment rose in 36 of the 37 metropolitan areas with annual average employment levels above 750,000 in 2012. The largest over-the-year percentage increase in employment in these large metropolitan areas occurred in Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas (+3.7 percent), followed by Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, Fla. (+3.6 percent), and Nashville-Davidson–Murfreesboro–Franklin, Tenn. (+3.3 percent). The only large area that had an over-the-year percentage decrease in employment was Cleveland-Elyria-Mentor, Ohio (-0.8 percent).

Metropolitan division nonfarm employment (not seasonally adjusted)

Nonfarm payroll employment data were available in August 2013 for 32 metropolitan divisions, which are essentially separately identifiable employment centers within a metropolitan area. Twenty-nine of the 32 metropolitan divisions had over-the-year employment gains and 3 had losses. The largest over-the-year increase in employment within the metropolitan divisions occurred in New York-White Plains-Wayne, N.Y.- N.J. (+112,200), followed by Dallas-Plano-Irving, Texas (+78,900), and Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, Ill. (+56,900). The only over-the-year decreases in employment occurred in Detroit-Livonia-Dearborn, Mich. (-4,700), followed by Gary, Ind. (-1,900), and Lake County-Kenosha County, Ill.-Wis. (-1,300).

The largest over-the-year percentage increase in employment among the metropolitan divisions occurred in Dallas-Plano-Irving, Texas (+3.7 percent), followed by Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas (+3.6 percent), and Haverhill-North Andover-Amesbury, Mass.-N.H. (+3.4 percent). The largest over-the-year percentage decreases in employment occurred in Detroit-Livonia-Dearborn, Mich., and Gary, Ind. (-0.7 percent each).

 

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