2012-06-07 / Front Page

April County Jobless Rate Increases

Unemployment up nearly one percentage point from March
By Jean Snyder

Fulton County’s labor force statistics for April showed a .9 percent increase in unemployment, as jobless rates continue to disappoint both here and nationwide. Along with the increase in unemployment, the county’s ranking in the state went from number 52 (out of 67 counties) in March back up to number 63 in April.

FultonCountyposteda9percent unemployment rate for April, according to preliminary figures released by the Department of Labor and Industry last week. March’s unemployment rate was 8.1 percent. Fulton’s unemployment rate for April 2011 was 10.4 percent.

In April, the number in the labor force remained at 7,700, the number of unemployed increased from 600 to 700, while the number of employed went from 7,100 in March to 7,000 in April.

Pennsylvania’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 7.4 percent in April, down one-tenth of a percentage point from the 7.5 percent March rate. Pennsylva- nia’s unemployment rate was below the U.S. rate of 8.1 percent, and has been below the U.S. rate for 48 consecutive months, and at or below the U.S. rate for 66 consecutive months.

The state’s unemployment rate was down 0.5 percentage points from April 2011.

April rankings for Fulton’s neighboring counties include Franklin at number 6, with an unemployment rate of 6.1 percent, down from March’s ranking of number 9, but with the same unemployment rate. It is tied with Adams, Butler, Cumberland, Lancaster and Lebanon counties for the sixth spot.

Bedford’s ranking for April was number 59, with an 8.8 percent rate. It is up slightly from March’s rate of 8.4 percent, then with a number-55 ranking. It was tied with Schuylkill County for the number-59 ranking.

Huntingdon County was ranked number 64 in April, with a 9.2 percent unemployment rate. The county posted an 8.6 percent rate in March and was ranked number 60.

Montour and Centre counties again held the first and second slots with rates of 5.3 and 5.5 percent, respectively, leaving Bradford and Chester counties tied for the third place in the rankings. Cameron held the 67th spot, posting the state’s highest unemployment rate of 11.7.

Pennsylvania’s seasonally adjusted civilian labor force – the number of people working or looking for work – was up 21,000 in April to 6,428,000. Resident employment was up 27,000 to 5,954,000, and the number of unemployed residents fell 6,000 to 474,000. Pennsylvania’s labor force was 32,000 above its April 2011 level.

Seasonally adjusted total nonfarm jobs in Pennsylvania were down 600 in April to 5,727,700. Goods-producers were down 4,100 due to a drop in construction of 5,400. Service-providing jobs increased 3,500 to a record high of 4,895,900. Trade, transportation and utilities had the largest increase of any supersector in April, adding 4,400 jobs. Leisure & hospitality set a new record-high level this month, increasing to 524,900 jobs.

Pennsylvania’s job count was up 38,600 (0.7 percent) over the year, while national total nonfarm jobs were up 1,816,000 (1.4 percent) over the past 12 months.

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