Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training


Job Count Climbs to New Record-High in June; Unemployment Rate Declines (pdf)
    July 20, 2007

The Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training announced today that the total number of seasonally adjusted, non-farm jobs in the state reached a new record-high level of 499,100 in June. The number of jobs in Rhode Island is up 800 jobs over the month, up 3,200 jobs since the beginning of 2007, and up 5,400 jobs since June 2006-the largest June to June increase in RI jobs since the year 2000.

In related news, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate inched down to 4.7 percent in June from 4.8 percent in May. Rhode Island's unemployment rate for June was 0.2 of a percentage point above the national unemployment rate of 4.5 percent.

The number of employed Rhode Island residents rose by 200 over the month to 552,100 in June 2007, surpassing the June 2006 total by 3,700. The number of unemployed residents fell by 500 from 27,500 in May to 27,000 in June and remains well below last year's level of 29,900.

From May to June of this year, employment gains of 300 each were noted in the Construction, Professional & Business Services and Accommodation & Food Services sectors. Employment in the Health Care & Social Assistance sector was up 200, followed by gains of 100 each in Educational Services and Government.

The increase in Construction employment continues to reflect the many construction projects underway throughout the state. Professional & Business Services employment was influenced by growth in temporary help agencies as well as landscaping companies, while Accommodation & Food Services employment increased due to gains in hotels and restaurants.

The month's gains were partially offset by job losses reported in Financial Activities (-300), Retail Trade (-100), and Other Services (-100). Within the Financial Activities sector, job losses were felt most acutely in the banking industry.

Monthly Employment

The largest annual employment gains occurred in the Professional & Business Services (+2,200); Construction (+1,500); Health Care & Social Assistance (+1,200); Financial Activities (+1,000) and Arts, Entertainment & Recreation (+900) sectors.

Manufacturing employment experienced the largest over-the-year loss (-2,000), followed by small declines in Information (-400), Wholesale Trade (-200), and Government (-100).

Hours and Earnings

In June 2007, production workers in the Manufacturing sector earned $13.89 per hour. The average hourly production wage was up 14 cents per hour from May and up 40 cents per hour from a year ago. Manufacturing employees worked an average of 39.0 hours per week in June, down 0.6 of an hour over the month and up 0.3 of an hour since June 2006.

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.

Note: Current month figures are preliminary; prior month and year are revised. Data are subject to revision. 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. 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. The July labor force figures are scheduled to be released on Friday, August 17, 2007.

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