BATON ROUGE – Louisiana’s civilian labor force grew to a record 2,179,837 in November as the number of people employed in the state jumped by 59,419 over the year, according to seasonally adjusted data released today by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Civilian employment in Louisiana was 2,037,838 in November, 7,152 more than in October and an increase that far exceeded the entire nation’s over-the-month increase of 4,000 more people working.
“The sustained growth in Louisiana’s labor force is dramatic,” Louisiana Workforce Commission Executive Director Curt Eysink said. “People are responding to Louisiana’s strong and sustained job growth by joining our workforce in record numbers to pursue these new opportunities.”
The BLS uses a monthly survey of 750 households to estimate the civilian labor force, the total number of people employed plus those looking for work. In November, there were 141,999 looking for work in Louisiana’s civilian labor force, which was 25,166 more than a year earlier, and 7,410 more than in October.
Louisiana’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate rose to 6.5 percent in November, a 0.9 percentage point increase from a year earlier and a 0.3 percentage point increase from October. The national unemployment rate in November was 5.8 percent, which was 1.2 percentage points lower than a year earlier and unchanged from October. The 17-state south regional average rate in November was 5.8 percent.
“The main reason Louisiana’s unemployment rate has risen is the speed of the growth of the labor force. Our job growth is strong but the growth in our labor force is even stronger,” Eysink said.
A separate BLS survey of 6,000 employers across industries and the state found that Louisiana’s private employers added 28,500 jobs over the year, making November the 50th consecutive month in which private sector hiring in the state resulted in an over-the-year job increase.
Private sector employment in November totaled 1,653,000, which boosted total nonfarm employment to 1,985,200, making last month the highest November ever.
Employment within trade, transportation, and utilities reached a record high in November, while professional and business services employment tied a record set in September, according to the BLS data.
Meanwhile, government sector employment in November dropped by 6,700 over the year. The decline was paced by a loss of 4,400 state jobs and 2,300 local government jobs, the seasonally adjusted data show.
Industries with the biggest over-the-year job gains were professional and business services, up 8,300; both the education and health services sector, and the trade, transportation, and utilities sector, added 5,900 jobs each; construction, up 4,900 jobs; and leisure and hospitality, which added 2,900 jobs.
The only private sectors that lost jobs over the year were information, which was down 1,100; mining and logging, which was down 600; and other services, which lost 400 jobs.
The LWC will release not seasonally adjusted data for November for the state’s metropolitan areas and parishes on Dec. 30.
Job seekers can explore careers, apply for the highest rated jobs and connect with local training providers on the LWC’s free career tool, Louisiana Star Jobs, at www.laworks.net/Stars.
Employers looking for workers should visit Louisiana’s employment homepage at www.laworks.net and create a HiRE account, which will provide access to qualified job seekers.
Job seekers have a new LWC online tool to help with career planning. “My Life. My Way.” estimates living costs around the state and connects users to occupations that afford their desired way of life. Visit “My Life. My Way.” at laworks.net/mylife.
To view all available employment data, visit Louisiana’s employment homepage at http://www.laworks.net and select Labor Market Information from the top-right menu. Then select LOIS (Louisiana Occupational Information System) and select Employment and Wage Data listed under Historical Data Analysis.
To view the BLS nonfarm estimates for the state, click here: http://data.bls.gov/pdq/querytool.jsp?survey=la.
Connect with the Louisiana Workforce Commission socially at facebook.com/louisianaworks, twitter.com/louisianaworks and linkedin.com/company/louisiana-workforce-commission.
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