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Characteristics of the Insured Unemployed
May 2018

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In May 2018, 31.8 percent of Rhode Island’s unemployed workers were eligible to collect Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits. Numbering 6,803 people, these "insured unemployed" accounted for 1.3 percent of the State’s total employed (unadjusted).  Nearly thirty-six percent (2,423) of the Ocean State’s insured unemployed faced long-term unemployment, defined as collecting unemployment benefits for more than fourteen weeks.


Almost 21 percent (1,414) of the people receiving UI benefits were between the ages of 35 and 44, while more than 21.0 percent (1,455) were 45 to 54 years old. Nearly 39 percent of all insured unemployed workers 60 years and older had been collecting benefits for at least fourteen weeks, while 34.5 percent of those under 22 years of age and 35.8 percent of 22 to 24 years old were considered long-term unemployed.


In May, nearly 39 percent (2,647) of those collecting UI benefits had just a high school diploma. An additional 732 people (10.8%) had less than a high school diploma, while 24.9 percent (1,694) of the insured unemployed had at least a Bachelor’s degree. Almost 33 percent of insured unemployed workers with less than a high school diploma had been collecting benefits for a minimum of fourteen weeks, while 34.9 percent of those with at least a Bachelor’s degree were also considered long-term unemployed.


On an industry basis, 13.2 percent (900) of the State’s insured unemployed workers came from the Health Care & Social Assistance sector. There were also 890 individuals with an attachment to the Administrative & Waste Services sector accounting for 13.1 percent of all insured unemployed workers. An additional 11.9 percent (807) of those collecting UI benefits in May had worked in the Manufacturing sector. Large numbers of insured unemployed were also reported in Retail Trade (733), Construction (718) and Accommodation & Food Services (546).


Those previously employed in Office & Administrative Support occupations accounted for 16.0 percent (1,088) of the State’s insured unemployed. A large number of workers previously employed in Production (705), Management (630), Transportation& Material Moving (446) and Sales & Related (433) occupations also collected UI benefits in May.  Numerous occupational groups reported concentrations of long-term unemployment above the state average, including Building & Grounds Cleaning & Maintenance (52.7%), Food Preparation & Serving Related (44.4%), Protective Service (44.1%) and Sales & Related (41.8%).

claimant characteristics
For more information on Unemployment Insurance, visit the UI web site at www.dlt.ri.gov/ui.

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
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