BATON ROUGE – Per revisions from Bureau of Labor & Statistics (BLS) annual benchmarking procedure, Louisiana seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment added jobs in January 2019 for the eleventh straight month over-the-year. Since January 2018, seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment increased by 10,200 jobs to 1,984,300. From December 2018, Louisiana added 2,100 jobs.
Benchmarking is BLS’s adjustment procedure to prior years’ data. This procedure which is undertaken by BLS every year, impacts every state when January data is published in March. During this procedure, survey data used to prepare monthly reports on nonfarm employment, the labor force and unemployment rates, is replaced by the actual employment data contained in the quarterly wage and tax reports filed by Louisiana employers. The two primary data sets used for benchmarking are the Current Employment Statistics (CES) and Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) programs.
On an annual basis, the CES program incorporates a benchmark revision that replaces published estimates with data received from the Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) program. QCEW employment levels are based on the Quarterly Wage and Tax Reports filed by Louisiana businesses. This year, several changes were made to the composition of certain series, which required data adjustment back to the beginning of those series.
The LAUS program revises at a minimum, five years of previous data to incorporate new inputs and population data. At the state level, LAUS receives new population controls from the Census Bureau, as well as updated CES and Unemployment Insurance (UI) claims inputs.
Since January 2018, seasonally adjusted private sector employment increased by 9,500 jobs to 1,657,400 for January 2019. This is also the eleventh straight over-the-year increase. From December 2018, seasonally adjusted private sector employment increased by 2,500 jobs.
“These past eleven months have shown that Louisiana residents are feeling more and more confident to enter into the labor force into family-sustaining careers,” said Louisiana Workforce Commission Secretary Ava Dejoie. “Our job is never finished however, and the LWC remains committed to providing the necessary and critical resources that will enable every Louisiana job-seeker a pathway to join our labor force.”
Industries that showed the largest gains for seasonally adjusted jobs:
• Leisure and Hospitality gained 3,600 jobs from January 2018 and 1,100 jobs from December 2018. The Leisure and Hospitality sector is at a series high for employment. The Leisure and Hospitality sector current employment is at 238,300 jobs.
• Other Services, which includes industries engaged in activities such as equipment and machinery repair and services, gained 1,500 jobs from January 2018 and 400 jobs from December 2018.
• Manufacturing gained 300 jobs from January 2018 and 100 jobs from December 2018.
• Education and Health Services gained 6,500 jobs from January 2018, but lost 200 jobs from December 2018.
• Mining and Logging lost 100 jobs from January 2018, but gained 100 jobs from December 2018.
The seasonally adjusted rate remained unchanged from December 2018’s benchmarked rate of 4.9 percent. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for the past eight months has not increased.
The seasonally adjusted number of employed individuals increased by 1,545 from December 2018 to 1,998,643.
The seasonally adjusted civilian labor force, or the number of people who are employed in addition to those looking for work increased by 1,588 from December 2018 to 2,101,361.
Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs)
Among Louisiana’s MSAs, seasonally adjusted data shows:
• Alexandria lost 800 jobs from January 2018, but remained unchanged from December 2018.
• Baton Rouge gained 2,500 jobs from January 2018, but lost 500 jobs from December 2018.
• Hammond gained 100 jobs from January 2018 and 100 jobs from December 2018.
• Houma lost 1,600 jobs from January 2018, but remained unchanged from December 2018.
• Lafayette gained 3,900 jobs from January 2018 and 1,000 jobs from December 2018.
• Lake Charles gained 1,200 jobs from January 2018, but lost 300 jobs from December 2018.
• Monroe remained unchanged from January 2018, but lost 100 jobs from December 2018.
• New Orleans gained 11,400 jobs from January 2018 and 4,600 jobs from December 2018.
• Shreveport lost 1,600 jobs from January 2018 and 800 jobs from December 2018.
Not Seasonally Adjusted Data
Not seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment increased by 8,600 jobs from January 2018 to 1,961,600 in January 2019. This is the eleventh straight increase over-the-year. Not seasonally adjusted private sector employment increased by 7,400 jobs to 1,636,300 from January 2018 to January 2019. This is also the eleventh straight increase over-the-year for not seasonally adjusted private sector employment.
The not seasonally adjusted civilian labor force increased over-the-year by 1,650 to 2,081,509.
Not-seasonally adjusted January 2019 unemployment rates for Louisiana’s nine MSAs are as follows:
• Alexandria: 5.7 percent, up from 5.4 percent in January 2018 and up from 5.0 percent from December.
• Baton Rouge: 4.7 percent, up from 4.3 percent in January 2018 and up from 3.9 percent from December.
• Hammond: 6.0 percent, up from 5.4 percent in January 2018 and up from 5.2 percent from December.
• Houma: 5.2 percent, up from 5.0 percent in January 2018 and up from 4.2 percent from December.
• Lafayette: 5.1 percent, unchanged from January 2018, but up from 4.3 percent from December.
• Lake Charles: 4.1 percent, up from 3.9 percent in January 2018 and up from 3.4 percent from December.
• Monroe: 5.8 percent, up from 5.1 percent in January 2018 and up from 5.0 percent from December.
• New Orleans: 4.8 percent, up from 4.5 percent in January 2018 and up from 4.0 percent from December.
• Shreveport: 5.4 percent, up from 5.0 percent in January 2018 and up from 4.7 percent from December.
February seasonally adjusted data will be released on March 22, 2019. For additional state and MSA data release dates, please click here.
Seasonally Adjusted vs. Not-Seasonally Adjusted Data
Jobs and employment trends data are often difficult to understand because there are two different ways to look at the data, seasonally or non-seasonally adjusted data.
Seasonal adjustment works to measure and remove the influences of predictable seasonal patterns to reveal how employment and unemployment figures change from month to month. Not seasonally adjusted data retains seasonal employment trends.
Over the course of a year, the labor force size, available jobs and employment rates undergo predictable fluctuations due to seasonal changes in weather, harvests, major holidays, and school schedules. Seasonal adjustment reduces the impact of these changes, making it easier to understand trends. Seasonally adjusted data is best utilized when comparing several months of employment and jobs data, while not seasonally adjusted data is best used to compare over-the-year trends. Seasonally adjusted data are useful for comparisons among states and the nation.
The Louisiana Workforce Commission primarily uses seasonally adjusted data because it provides a more useful and telling picture of Louisiana’s jobs and employment situation.
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 Data Trends. 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.
Resources for employers and job seekers
Job-seekers can explore careers, apply for top-rated jobs and connect with local training providers using Louisiana Star Jobs, the LWC’s free career tool, at http://www.laworks.net/Stars/. Employers looking for workers should visit Louisiana’s employment homepage at www.laworks.net. Click on HiRE (Helping Individuals Reach Employment) and create an account allowing access to qualified job seekers.
About the Louisiana Workforce Commission
The Louisiana Workforce Commission is an agency of state government that administers programs designed to enhance workforce growth and provide family-sustaining jobs for Louisiana residents. The commission monitors employment, administers unemployment compensation and tax funds, provides training resources for employers and employees and oversees worker compensation benefits. The agency also gathers and supplies information on the labor market and occupational sectors in Louisiana.
Note: This revision date does not reflect the revision date of the press release shown. Press Release postings are updated as needed and should be considered accurate as shown.