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Jon Talton

Analysis and commentary on economic news, trends and issues, with an emphasis on Seattle and the Northwest.

December 18, 2014 at 10:16 AM

Washington’s unemployment dilemma in one chart

The state unemployment rate ticked up to 6.2 percent in November. In September, it was 5.7 percent. To be sure, the November rate is better than 6.8 percent in the same month a year ago and it is a preliminary number.

Still, can we be satisfied with state labor economist Paul Turek’s explanation that the upswing is a result of more people entering an improving labor market? Nationally, where data are more comprehensive, more people are also applying for work but the result is to hold the national rate steady.

Total nonfarm employment in Washington has surpassed its pre-recession high. The Seattle area is doing very well. Unfortunately, the statewide rate of job creation is disappointing compared with this stage of previous recoveries. That is also playing a role in the stubborn state unemployment rate.

fredgraph


Today’s Econ Haiku:

‘A tax on freedom’

What about the liberty

To save the planet?


 

 

Comments | More in | Topics: Washington unemployment

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