Year-to-year regional unemployment continues to decline

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On June 27th, the BLS released its most recent “Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment” report, concerning May’s national employment statistics. According to the report, unemployment decreased within 331 of the nation’s 372 metropolitan areas, from May 2011 to May 2012.During that time span, unemployment also remained the same in nine areas and rose in 32 other areas.

In May, 45 metro areas reported jobless rates of 10 percent or higher, a decrease of 39, in comparison to May 2011’s statistics. In addition, employment increased in 266 metro areas, from May 2011 to May 2012, while 140 areas recorded unemployment rates of seven percent or lower. At the time, the national unemployment rate was 8.2 percent; nearly 150 areas documented jobless rates at or above that level.

Of note, two Midwestern cities’ economies remained robust in May, as Bismarck, N.D., and Fargo, N.D.-Minn., continued to record the nation’s lowest unemployment rates, at 2.5 and three percent, respectively. In contrast, as usual, two Western cities, Yuma, Ariz., and El Centro, Calif., once again documented considerably high jobless rates, at 28.9 and 26.8 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, the BLS also released the following statistics regarding regional employment and inflation. All statistics were recorded in May.

Source: BLS

  • Mid–Atlantic: After four consecutive months of decreases, the Philadelphia, Pa., metro area’s national unemployment rose from 7.4 percent in April to 7.8 percent in May, as 153,300 residents were without work. (Link)
  • Midwest: From May 2011 to May 2012, the greater Chicago area’s Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) and Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) augmented by one and 0.7 percent, respectively. (Link)
  • Mountain-Plains: Employment within the greater St. Louis, Mo., area’s education and health services, manufacturing, and professional and business services industries rose from May 2011 to May 2012, by 1.1, 3.1, and 2.4 percent, respectively. (Link)
  • New England: The greater Boston, Mass., area’s CPI-U and CPI-W increased slightly from May 2011 to May 2012, by 0.8 and 0.5 percent, respectively. (Link)
  • New York–New Jersey: The greater New York City area’s jobless rate rose from 8.4 percent in April to 8.8 percent in May, as 838,300 New Yorkers were unemployed. Back in April, 788,000 residents were without work. (Link)
  • Southeast: Dalton, Ga.’s unemployment rate remained unchanged in May, lingering at 11.4 percent, nearly three percent above the national average. 51,700 residents were employed in May, while 6,700 were actively seeking employment. (Link)
  • Southwest: Yuma, Ariz.’s CPI-U and CPI-W rose on a year-to-year basis in May, by two and 1.9 percent, respectively, while unemployment increased from 26 percent in April to 28.9 percent in May. (Link)
  • West: Tacoma, Wash.’s jobless rate rose considerably from April to May, by 0.7 percent, as 37,300 residents were unemployed. However, from May 2011 to May 2012, employment did uptick within the city’s education and health services and manufacturing industries, by 5.5 and 4.3 percent, respectively. (Link)

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