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August Jobs Report: PA Unemployment Rises

UnemploymentIf the 2014 gubernatorial contest in Pa. is about one thing, it’s the economy. PoliticsPA will continue to bring you the new jobs numbers each month.

After three months at a steady rate of 7.5%, Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate rose to 7.7% in the month of August. The national rate was 7.3%.

The good news

It’s hard to find.

The state added a net 26,900 jobs this month (compared to August, 2012) according to seasonally adjusted figures from BLS. That number is more than 500 less than the amount added in July.

Looking only at private sector jobs, as Gov. Tom Corbett prefers to do, the state added more than 34,000 according to an analysis of the BLS numbers from Arizona State University.

The mediocre news

Despite the unemployment rate having increased, it still remains half a percentage point down from the beginning of the year. In January, Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate was 8.2%. The rate still remains relatively far from its recent peak of 8.7% in March of 2010.

The Commonwealth ranked 28th in the raw number of jobs added, according to an analysis of the BLS numbers from Arizona State University.

The bad news

The unemployment rate experienced its first increase since January, from 7.5% to 7.7%. That’s 0.4% higher than the national rate, the biggest deficit over the national rate that Pa. has had since at least 1990.

Pennsylvania’s rate remains above the national average, which was 7.3% as of August. As a whole the country added just over 2.1 million jobs in August; however, both the country and state have continued to lose public sector jobs.

Pa. lost 7,800 public sector jobs, according to an analysis of the BLS numbers from Arizona State University.

It’s been four months since more than half a million people were unemployed in Pa. Back in March the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics counted 513,000. Now, with preliminary results released this morning, the number of unemployed once again crested 500,000 with August’s numbers at 501,000.

The state is ranked 46th nationwide in job growth — no change from July. The state’s historic average rank in job growth is 34th.

Side note: To determine Pa.’s job growth rank, PoliticsPA and most economists look at a 12 month moving average of jobs numbers.

The Pa. Democratic Party uses a less accurate measure which makes a simple comparison to each month’s numbers compared the same month, previous year. Ironically, according to that measure, Pa. improved by 6 places, jumping from 49th in July to 43rd in August.

4 Responses

  1. What they not saying that average they keep quoting is actually HIGHER, because of the people who can’t find jobs and they are falling of the chart cause they collect anymore despite jobs searches, and applications. One job I applied to had over 6000 aplications for it. And the ones who get hired don’t have experience, are teenages on summer break, minorities and seniors.

  2. Baggers keep doing everything they can to destroy our economy nationally and in this state. The results are coming back to haunt them next year.

  3. The current unemployment rate in Loundon County, Virginia home of PA’s real acting Governor John Brabender is 3.6%. This Virginia County also has the highest per capita income in the US. Too bad Governor Brabender is not forced to eat his own cooking in Pennsylvania. I am looking forward to visiting the Corbett library in Loudon County soon. POLITICAL NECROPHILIA: IT’S ALL GOOD!

  4. One. Term. Tom.

    All that remains to be seen is how much more cash he can grab for himself over the next 13 months by selling PA out to his wealthy owners. And if he can escape indictment while doing so, with an agressive AG on his heels. Should be fun to watch!

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