Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training


Rhode Island Job Count is Unchanged in November (pdf)

December 22, 2006

Adelita S. Orefice, Director of the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training, announced today that Rhode Island's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for November, estimated at 5.2 percent, showed little change over the month. The November jobless rate edged up 0.2 of a percentage point from October's rate of 5.0 percent. The number of unemployed Rhode Island residents increased by 1,400 over the month to 30,200 in November. A year ago, the jobless level was 29,300 and the unemployment rate stood at 5.1 percent. Nationally, the unemployment rate for November inched up 0.1 of a percentage point to 4.5 percent. Compared to a year ago, the national jobless rate is down half a percentage point. Rhode Island's unemployment rate for November remained above the national average.

Employment at Rhode Island businesses remained unchanged last month, keeping the November job count at 493,900 (seasonally adjusted). Over-the-month job gains in Professional & Business Services (+400); Educational & Health Services (+400); Financial Activities (+300); and Government (+200) were partially offset by employment declines in the Leisure & Hospitality (-400); Other Services (-300); and Construction (-100) sectors.

"The number of jobs at Rhode Island businesses has remained stable over the last few months," said Director Orefice. "Overall, employers have been cautious about hiring as we enter the holiday season. Small gains in several sectors have been offset by similar cutbacks in other sectors."

Employment gains in Professional & Business Services reflected additional hiring in Employment Services, while job growth in Educational & Health Services was attributed to additional workers in private colleges and universities. Financial Activities employment increased due to job gains in the banking industry. The addition of temporary election workers boosted Local Government employment in November. Job losses in Leisure & Hospitality were the result of employment declines in Food Services & Drinking Places.

Over the year, jobs were up 400 from the 493,500 jobs reported in November 2005. Annual employment growth occurred in the Financial Activities (+2,100); Professional & Business Services (+1,100); Educational & Health Services (+800); and Construction (+700) sectors, offsetting losses in Manufacturing (-1,500); Other Services (-900); Trade, Transportation & Utilities (-600); Government (-600); and Leisure & Hospitality (-400).

Hours and Earnings

In November 2006, the $13.48 average hourly wage earned by the Manufacturing sector's production workers represented a monthly loss of three cents per hour and an over-the-year gain of seventeen cents per hour. Manufacturing employees worked an average of 39.7 hours per week in November, up 0.4 of an hour over the month and 1.2 hours since November 2005.

Note: Current month figures are preliminary; prior month and year are revised. Data may not be additive and 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.

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Rhode Island Labor Market Information is available on our web site at www.dlt.ri.gov/lmi
The December labor force figures are scheduled to be released on Friday, January 19, 2007.

The Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training offers a wide array of employment and training services to both the general public and to individuals with unusual barriers to employment. DLT is ready to assist any job seeker, whether the goal is a first job, a better job, or a career change. Rhode Island's workforce is protected through the enforcement of labor laws, prevailing wage rates, and workplace health and safety standards. Temporary income support is available to unemployed, sick, or injured workers and a comprehensive rehabilitation program is available to those injured on the job.

DLT is dedicated to the growth and competitiveness of Rhode Island industry, administering a variety of training grants, tax credits, and apprenticeship programs to help employers. Economic indicators and labor market information are available for long-range planning. The Agency engages in active outreach, helping large and small employers retain their best workers or retrain their existing work force. At no cost to the employer, DLT will also screen job applicants, post job vacancies, and help businesses institute cost-sharing programs that can avert layoffs.

For more information on the innovative programs and services available to all Rhode Islanders at the Department of Labor and Training, please call (401) 462-8000 or visit the web site at

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