Unemployment Rate Drops to 7.7 percent in July 2014 (pdf)
August 14, 2014
The RI Department of Labor and Training announced today that the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for July 2014 dropped to 7.7 percent, down two-tenths of a percentage point from the June 2014 rate and down one and nine-tenths percentage points from the July 2013 rate. This is the lowest unemployment rate since June 2008. The unemployment rate is down one and six-tenths percentage points since the beginning of the year.
The U.S. unemployment rate was 6.2 percent in July 2014, up one-tenth of a percentage point from the previous month and down one and one-tenth percentage points over the year.
The number of unemployed RI residents—those residents classified as available for and actively seeking employment—was 43,100, down 1,100 from the June figure of 44,200. This represents the 12th consecutive over-the-month decrease and the lowest unemployment level since May 2008. Over the year, the number of unemployed dropped by 10,200.
A total of 12,561 individuals collected Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits in July 2014,* down from 13,552 a year ago. This month, UI claimants accounted for 28 percent of the total unemployed.
The number of employed RI residents was unchanged from the June figure of 515,400. Over the year, the number of employed RI residents was up 13,100 from July 2013.
The RI labor force totaled 558,500 in July 2014, down 1,100 from June 2014 and up 2,900 from July 2013.
JOBS BASED IN RHODE ISLAND: Estimated nonfarm payroll in Rhode Island totaled 477,800 in July, reflecting a gain of 1,200 jobs from the revised June employment estimate of 476,600. The July employment level represents the highest employment level since September 2008 (478,600).
Robust employment gains were reported in the Professional and Business Services and Financial Activities sectors, which grew by 1,400 and 900 jobs, respectively. The Professional and Business Services sector was fueled by gains reported in professional and technical services as well as gains in administrative services. The real estate segment was the catalyst behind the job surge within the Financial Activities sector.
In addition, the Educational Services (+600) and Government (+400) sectors noted strong employment gains in July.
Job gains in July were offset by large losses reported in Manufacturing, Accommodation and Food Services and Health Care and Social Assistance, as all three sectors lost 500 jobs each. The durable goods component suffered job losses in the Manufacturing sector, while employment was down among food service establishments within Accommodation and Food Services. Health Care was negatively affected by job losses reported within ambulatory health care services and social assistance.
Employment in Retail Trade, Wholesale Trade and Arts, Entertainment and Recreation declined by 200 each since June, while Transportation and Warehousing employment decreased by 100.
Employment in six sectors — Health Care and Social Assistance (-600), Government (-400), Other Services (-400), Educational Services (-400), Wholesale Trade (-300) and Information (-200) — was down over the year. Employment in Accommodation & Food Services and Mining and Logging remained unchanged.
MANUFACTURING: In July 2014, production workers in the Manufacturing sector earned $18.06 per hour, down 25 cents from June 2014 and down 82 cents from July 2013. Manufacturing production employees worked an average of 40.4 hours per week in July, down one-tenth of an hour over the month and up four-tenths of an hour from a year ago
METHODOLOGY: The unemployment figures are based largely on a survey of households in Rhode Island and measure the unemployment status of people who live in the state. Unemployment rates prior to 1976 are not recognized by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics as official since the methodology used at that time is not comparable to today’s methods. The establishment employment figures are derived from a survey of businesses in Rhode Island and measure the number of jobs in the state. Rhode Island labor market information is available at www.dlt.ri.gov/lmi. Additional information on procedures for producing Current Employment Statistics (CES) estimates is available on the BLS web site at http://www.bls.gov/sae/cesprocs.htm. The August 2014 labor force figures are scheduled to be released on Thursday, September 18, 2014, at 2:00 p.m.
ABOUT DLT: The RI Department of Labor and Training offers employment services, educational services and economic opportunity to both individuals and employers. DLT protects Rhode Island’s workforce by enforcing labor laws, prevailing wage rates and workplace health and safety standards. The department also provides temporary income support to unemployed and temporarily disabled workers. For more information, please call the RI Department of Labor and Training at (401) 462-8000 or visit the web site at www.dlt.ri.gov.
*Refers to the number of new claims filed by UI beneficiaries and claims filed by those already collecting UI in the week that includes the 12th of the month.
ABOUT DLT: The RI Department of Labor and Training offers employment services, educational services and economic opportunity to both individuals and employers. DLT protects Rhode Island’s workforce by enforcing labor laws, prevailing wage rates and workplace health and safety standards. The department also provides temporary income support to unemployed and temporarily disabled workers. For more information on the programs and services available to all Rhode Islanders, please call the RI Department of Labor and Training at (401) 462-8000 or visit the web site at www.dlt.ri.gov.