News
Date:December 7, 2015
Contact:LWC Public Affairs @ (225) 342-3035

Unemployment rates drop over the year in most Louisiana metro areas

BATON ROUGE – Unemployment rates dropped from October 2014 to October 2015 in Louisiana and seven out of the state’s nine metropolitan statistical areas, according to not-seasonally-adjusted data released today by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The BLS report notes that Lake Charles showed the nation’s third best over-the-year percentage increase in jobs among the nation’s MSAs thanks to billions of dollars of industrial projects that are under construction.

“The construction boom in the Southwest coupled with the continued growth of jobs in the hospitality sector are the bright spots in our state’s jobs picture this fall,” said LWC Executive Director Curt Eysink. “However, we continue to see low oil prices having a negative effect on jobs in the Lafayette, Houma and Shreveport areas.”

The Lafayette and Houma-Thibodaux MSAs were the only two with over-the-year unemployment rate increases as they have taken the brunt of the impact of the low price of oil. According to the BLS report today, oil-sensitive Lafayette led the nation’s MSAs in its over-the-year decline in jobs with a loss of 4,300. Houma showed the nation’s third-largest percent decrease of jobs with a decline of 2.7 percent. The Shreveport MSA has lost 1,600 nonfarm jobs and 700 mining and logging jobs over the 12-month period.

The not-seasonally-adjusted data show 48,674 fewer participants in the state’s civilian labor force over the 12-month period with 37,076 fewer employed individuals and 11,598 fewer individuals looking for work.

“The decline in the number of people in the civilian labor force may be a result of the slowdown in the oil and gas industry,” Eysink said.

Not-seasonally-adjusted October unemployment rates and over-the-year nonfarm job change totals for the state and the nine MSAs are as follows:

• Statewide: 6.4 percent, up from 6.2 percent in September and down from 6.8 percent in October 2014. Down 8,800 jobs.

• Alexandria: 6.6 percent, up from 6.5 in September and down from 7.2 percent in October 2014. Down 700 jobs.

• Baton Rouge: 5.4 percent, up from 5.3 percent in September and down from 6.2 percent in October 2014. Up 7,200 jobs.

• Hammond: 7.0 percent, up from 6.9 percent in September and down from 7.7 percent in October 2014. Up 100 jobs.

• Houma: 6.0 percent, up from 5.5 percent in September and 5.3 percent in October 2014. Down 2,800 jobs.

• Lafayette: 6.8 percent, up from 6.3 percent in September and 5.8 percent in October 2014. Down 4,300 jobs.

• Lake Charles: 5.3 percent, unchanged from September and down from 6.1 percent in October 2014. Up 4,600 jobs.

• Monroe: 6.8 percent, up from 6.6 percent in September and down from 7.5 percent in October 2014. Down 500 jobs.

• New Orleans: 6.2 percent, up from 6.1 percent in September and down from 6.9 percent in October 2014. Up 600 jobs.

• Shreveport: 7.2 percent, up from 6.9 percent in September and down from 7.6 percent in October 2014. Down 1,600 jobs.

To view all available employment data, visit Louisiana’s employment homepage at 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 analysis. To view the BLS Local Area Unemployment Statistics for the state, visit http://data.bls.gov/pdq/querytool.jsp?survey=la. For BLS nonfarm employment data, click here: http://data.bls.gov/pdq/querytool.jsp?survey=sm.

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