RI Department of Labor and Training
Press Release
 

Rhode Island-Based Jobs up 3,100 from June;
July Unemployment Rate Rises to 4.3 Percent (pdf)

August 17, 2017

The RI Department of Labor and Training announced today that the state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for July 2017 was 4.3 percent, up one-tenth of a percentage point from the June rate. Over the year, the unemployment rate is down one and one-tenth percentage points from the July 2016 rate of 5.4 percent.

The U.S. unemployment rate was 4.3 percent in July 2017, down one-tenth of a percentage point from the previous month and down six-tenths of a percentage point over the year.

The number of unemployed RI residents—those residents classified as available for and actively seeking employment—was 24,100, up 800 from the June figure of 23,300. Over the year, the number of unemployed dropped by 5,800.

A total of 10,438 individuals collected Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits in July 2017,* down from 10,486 a year ago. This month, UI claimants accounted for 38.8 percent of the total unemployed.

The number of employed RI residents was 532,800, down 400 from the June figure of 533,200. Over the year, the number of employed RI residents was up 10,000 from July 2016.

The RI labor force totaled 556,900 in July 2017, up 400 from June 2017 and up 4,200 from July 2016. 

 

  July 17 June 17 July 16
RI Unemployment Rate 4.3% 4.2% 5.4%
U.S. Unemployment Rate  4.3% 4.4% 4.9%
RI Job Count
(in thousands)
499.2 496.1 490.7


Highlights:
 

  • The RI unemployment rate was 4.3 percent, up one-tenth of a percentage point from last month and down one and one-tenth percentage points from a year ago.
  • The number of RI-based jobs is up 3,100 from June and up 8,500 from a year ago.
  • The number of employed RI residents decreased by 400 over the month.

  • There were 10,438 individuals collecting Unemployment Insurance benefits in July.*

JOBS BASED IN RHODE ISLAND: Estimated nonfarm payroll in Rhode Island totaled 499,200 in July, reflecting a gain of 3,100 jobs from the revised June estimate of 496,100. A total of 2,800 of the 3,100 jobs were generated in the private sector. Overall, the number of jobs in Rhode Island is up 8,500 from a year ago.

Employment in the Accommodation & Food Services sector continued to trend up in July, adding 1,400 jobs. July marks four consecutive months of job gains within the sector, totaling 3,500 jobs. Accommodation & Food Services has added 3,500 jobs over the past year.

In July, Health Care & Social Assistance employment increased by 600, recouping most of the 800 jobs which were lost in June. This industry has added 400 jobs over the year.

The number of jobs in the Manufacturing sector rose by 600 over the month and employment within the industry continues to rise. The July employment level of 41,800 is the highest level since March 2009.

Another gain of 600 jobs was reported in the Professional & Business Services sector, snapping four consecutive months of job losses. The number of jobs in this industry is down 200 over the year.

Employment in the Government sector rose by 300 from June, while employment in the Educational Services and Arts, Entertainment & Recreation sectors rose by 200 each. Among these sectors, Educational Services employment is up 700 from a year ago and employment in both the Arts, Entertainment & Recreation and Government sectors is up 100 from a year ago.

The Retail Trade and Transportation & Utilities sectors each added 100 jobs in July and each sector has added 300 jobs over the year. Employment in Construction, Information and Mining & Logging remained unchanged.

Offsetting the July gains were job losses reported in three employment sectors. The number of jobs in the Financial Activities sector fell by 500 over the month and the number of jobs in this sector is down 400 from July 2016.

The Wholesale Trade sector reported its first job decline since January, shedding 300 jobs in July. Overall, the sector has 300 more jobs than a year ago.

Rounding out the job losses was a loss of 200 jobs reported in the Other Services sector. Employment in Other Services is up 300 over the year.

MANUFACTURING: In July 2017, production workers in the Manufacturing sector earned $19.30 per hour, up thirty-five cents from June 2017 and up ninety cents from July 2016.

Manufacturing employees worked an average of 38.7 hours per week in July, down six-tenths of an hour over the month and unchanged 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 of employment figures is 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 website at www.bls.gov/sae/cesprocs.htm BLS will be releasing all states’ July labor force data and job counts on August 18, 2017. DLT is scheduled to release the August 2017 labor force figures and job counts on Thursday, September 14, 2017, at 10:00 a.m.

*Refers to the number of new and reopened 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 opportunities 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 website at www.dlt.ri.gov

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