Pennsylvania’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate declined by three-tenths of a percentage point in April to 5.7 percent, the lowest rate since September 2008. The commonwealth’s rate was six-tenths of a percentage point below the U.S. rate of 6.3 percent, which was down by four-tenths of a point from March. The state rate was down 1.9 percentage points from its April2013 rate of 7.6 percent.
Pennsylvania’s civilian labor force – the number of people working or looking for work – was essentially unchanged in April. Resident employment, however, was up 23,000, marking the eighth consecutive gain and the fourth straight increase exceeding 10,000. The number of unemployed residents decreased by 22,000 to its lowest level since September 2008. This was the ninth consecutive decline and one of the largest on record.
Total nonfarm jobs grew by 10,900 in April to reach 5,768,800, the highest level since October 2008. The gain was concentrated in the private sector, which added 11,600 jobs while public sector jobs fell by 700. The largest gain was in professional & business services (+8,100), which reached a record high at 759,000 jobs.Construction also added a large amount of jobs in April, up 6,500, the third gain in the last four months.
Over the year, total nonfarm jobs in Pennsylvania were up 34,400 (+0.6%). The growth was primarily within private industries, with the largest gains in leisure & hospitality (+14,600) and professional & business services (+12,700).
Note: The above data are seasonally adjusted. Seasonally adjusted data provide the most valid month-to-month comparison.