Parish jobless rate edges up
St. Mary Parish’s unemployment rate increased to 8.3 percent in June, up 0.7 percent over the month, but down 0.5 percent from a year ago, the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Thursday.
Louisiana’s unemployment rate was 7.9 percent in June, up 0.2 percent over the year and 0.9 percent over the month. The national rate was 7.8 percent, down 0.6 percent over the year and up 0.5 percent over the month.
Private sector employment grew 2 percent over the year, while government was down 1.5 percent, the result of the loss of 5,300 jobs over the year, a press release from the Louisiana Workforce Commission indicated.
Parish numbers are not seasonally adjusted for vacations, end of school changes in work status and similar factors.
Industry sectors that paced not seasonally adjusted employment were construction, which added 11,800 jobs over the year, or 9.3 percent; trade, transportation, and utilities, up 6,900 jobs, or 1.8 percent; and leisure and hospitality, up 7,100 jobs, or 3.4 percent.
Baton Rouge led all metropolitan statistical areas in over-the-year growth, adding 6,800 nonfarm jobs from last June, while the New Orleans area added 4,100 jobs over the year.
Louisiana’s civilian labor force — the number of people working plus those looking for work — grew to 2.13 million in June, up 12,304 over the year and up 26,447 over the month.
The number of employed grew by 7,658 over the year, while unemployment rose by 4,646 over the year. The number of employed in June was 1.97 million, and the number of unemployed was 168,593.
Over the month, unemployment grew by 21,925, while the number of employed grew 4,522.
The increase in unemployment and the rise in the unemployment rate are associated with the end of the school year when public and private schools and universities cut back their staffs, and when many students enter the workforce for the first time.
“The long-standing job growth trends are continuing in Louisiana, and our private sector and civilian labor force are both larger than they were a year ago,” Louisiana Workforce Commission Executive Director Curt Eysink said. “It is not uncommon for the not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate to fluctuate this time of year with educators and students on vacation.”
June’s not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates for Louisiana’s metropolitan statistical areas and their over the year changes were:
—Alexandria, 8.1 percent, up from 7.7 percent in June 2012;
—Baton Rouge, 7.8 percent, unchanged;
—Houma, 5.7 percent, up from 5.5 percent;
—Lafayette, 6.0 percent, up from 5.7 percent;
—Lake Charles, 7.0 percent, down from 7.1 percent;
—Monroe, 8.5 percent, up from 8.4 percent;
—New Orleans, 7.9 percent, up from 7.8 percent;
—Shreveport, 8.3 percent, up from 7.6 percent.