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Washington gains more than 100,000 jobs since January 2014

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January's monthly employment report from the state Employment Security Department (ESD) estimates employment increased by 100,500 from January 2014 to January 2015, on a not seasonally adjusted basis, with 89,800 new jobs in the private sector and 10,700 new jobs in the public sector.

According to preliminary estimates by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released by ESD today, Washington's unemployment rate for January 2015 was 6.4 percent while the U.S. unemployment rate was 5.7. Unemployment in the Seattle/Bellevue/Everett area remained steady at 4.6 percent.

State labor economist Paul Turek expressed continued optimism for Washington's job growth and employment.

"This is another good labor market report," Turek said. "With more than 100,000 new since January 2014 and continued growth in the labor force, Washington's economy remains strong. We saw job growth in every industry with the exception of one."

The top five industry sectors with the largest employment gains from January 2014 to January 2015 were:

  • Professional and business services with 17,200 new jobs;
  • Construction with 17,000 jobs;
  • Retail trade with 16,200 jobs;
  • Education and health services with 13,000 new jobs; and
  • Government with 10,700 new jobs.

The mining and logging industry lost 100 jobs from January 2014 to January 2015.

According to today's monthly employment report, the state added 18,300 new jobs from December 2014 to January 2015, including gains of 18,500 in the private sector and a loss of 200 government jobs, on a nonfarm, seasonally adjusted basis.

Industries with the largest increase month-over-month included leisure and hospitality (5,000); construction (4,800); and retail trade (3,600). Industries facing the largest losses included transportation, warehousing and utilities (-500), wholesale trade (-400), and government (-200).

Washington's resident labor force, the total number of people in the workforce, employed and unemployed, ages 16 and older, increased by an estimated 86,400 people from January 2014 through January 2015.

ESD paid unemployment benefits to 88,113 claimants this month.

ESD also released county-level data today. County unemployment rates and employment data for January 2014 are available and posted online atwww.esd.wa.gov/employmentdata. Click "Statewide and county detail" in the "Current unemployment rate" box.

Unemployment rates at the county level are not seasonally adjusted because the sample size is too small to accommodate that additional analysis. Therefore, they should not be compared directly to the seasonally adjusted statewide rate. At the top of the state map featuring the county unemployment rates, ESD posts the statewide, non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for direct comparison.

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WHH - State News
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