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Rhode Island Economy:
Peak, Trough and Recovery
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In December 2006, Rhode Island’s total nonfarm employment level peaked at 496,400. Nearly three years later in August 2009, nonfarm employment decreased by 39,600 to 456,800, an eight percent decrease. Private sector employment declined by 8.4 percent or 36,100 jobs during this period, while government sector employment fell by 3,500 (-5.4%). Between December 2006 and August 2009, local government employment decreased by 2,400 (-6.4%), followed by state government (-1,500), while the federal government added 400 jobs.

By December 2012, Rhode Island recovered a quarter of the jobs lost between the peak and trough as nonfarm employment averaged 466,800, an increase of 10,000 since the low employment level of 456,800. The private sector regained 32.1 percent or 11,600 of the lost jobs since the trough, while government employment continued to report additional losses. The public sector lost an additional 1,600 jobs since August 2009, as the local and federal government branch’s shed 1,600 and 100 jobs, respectively. State government reported a modest increase since the trough, adding 100 jobs.

In December 2012, the Rhode Island economy was down 6.0 percent or 29,600 jobs since the peak employment level of 496,400 in December 2006. Private sector employment decreased by 24,500 (-5.7%) while Government employment was down by 5,100 or 7.9 percent. Overall, local government lost 4,000 (-10.7%) employees between December 2006 and December 2012 while state government lost 1,400 employees (-8.0%). Federal government grew by 300 (+3.0%) during this period.

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RI Department of Labor and Training
Labor Market Information
Center General Complex
1511 Pontiac Avenue, Cranston, RI 02920

Phone: (401) 462-8740
Fax (401) 462-8766
TTY via RI Relay: 711
5/8/15 MDF
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