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Date:March 25, 2022
Contact:LWC Public Affairs @ (225) 342-3035

Post-pandemic employment gains show strong historic movements

BATON ROUGE, La. – Two years after the pandemic and preliminary data shows Louisiana’s Seasonally Adjusted nonfarm employment is at its highest point since March 2020. With a seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 4.3% that makes the rate and number of unemployed the third best February since 1976. Louisianas non-farm employment level has seen 11 straight over the year gains.

The numbers for February 2022, released today by the Bureau of Laor Statistics (BLS), shows an estimated gain of 2,500 jobs with 1,904,900 from the revised January 2022 estimate of 1,902,400 jobs. The February 2022 seasonally adjusted unemployment rate shows no change over the month. The rate dropped 2.0 percentage points from the February 2021 rate of 6.3 percent. The rate has declined over the year for 12 straight months. Along with January 2022, the February rate is the lowest for the state since June 2019.

Since January 2022, Louisiana’s seasonally adjusted private sector employment increased by 3,600 jobs from 1,589,900 to 1,593,500 in February 2022. When compared to February 2021, seasonally adjusted private sector employment increased by 59,700 jobs.

Since January 2022, the number of seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 9,691 from 1,979,269 to 1,988,960 in February 2022. When compared to February 2021, the number of seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 60,910.

Since January 2022, the number of seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 511 from 89,808 to 89,297 in February 2022. When compared to February 2021, the number of seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 39,339.

“These numbers show strong, stable growth after a tough couple of years dealing with COVID-19,” said Louisiana Workforce Commission Secretary Ava Cates. “They show Louisianians are getting back to work in record numbers. If Louisianains are known for one thing it’s their resiliency and that’s what’s clear here.”

As of the week ending Feb. 5, there are over 32,0000 jobs available in Louisiana through https://www.louisianaworks.net/hire. LWC’s Hope Central Career Planning & Recovery System, powered by Kuder® offers free training sessions to help you develop the skills you need to get back to work or pursue a new career. Find a webinar to attend here.

Major industries that showed the largest gains for seasonally adjusted jobs over the month:

• Manufacturing gained 2,200 jobs from January 2022.

• Professional and Business Services gained 1,700 jobs from January 2022.

• Trade, Transportation, and Utilities gained 1,100 jobs from January 2022.

Major industries that showed the largest gains for seasonally adjusted jobs over the year:

• Leisure and Hospitality gained 18,600 jobs from February 2021.

• Professional and Business Services gained 12,700 jobs from February 2021.

• Construction gained 8,600 jobs from February 2021.

Among Louisiana’s MSAs in February 2022, seasonally adjusted data shows:

• Alexandria (62,300 jobs) added 200 jobs from January 2022 and gained 1,600 jobs from February 2021.

• Baton Rouge (399,600 jobs) added 1,000 jobs from January 2022 and gained 12,000 jobs from February 2021.

• Hammond (46,700 jobs) added 200 jobs from January 2022 and gained 300 jobs from February 2021.

• Houma (80,300 jobs) added 500 jobs from January 2022, but lost 2,100 jobs from February 2021.

• Lafayette (199,700 jobs) added 700 jobs from January 2022 and gained 5,600 jobs from February 2021.

• Lake Charles (100,800 jobs) added 300 jobs from January 2022 and gained 7,000 jobs from February 2021.

• Monroe (76,100 jobs) added 600 jobs from January 2022 and gained 1,600 jobs from February 2021.

• New Orleans (550,100 jobs) added 1,900 jobs from January 2022 and gained 15,100 jobs from February 2021.

• Shreveport (173,900 jobs) lost 200 jobs from January 2022, but gained 5,400 jobs from February 2021.

Not Seasonally Adjusted Data

Since January 2022, not seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment increased by 19,100 jobs from 1,883,200 to 1,902,300 in February 2022. When compared to February 2021, not seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment increased by 59,000 jobs. The February 2022 employment figure shows 11 consecutive over-the-year gains.

Since January 2022, not seasonally adjusted private sector employment increased by 14,700 jobs from 1,573,200 to 1,587,900 in February 2022. When compared to February 2021, not seasonally adjusted private sector employment increased by 61,700 jobs.

Louisiana’s not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for February 2022 is 3.9 percent, a decrease of 0.4 percentage points from the revised January 2022 not seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of 4.3 percent. The rate also shows a decrease of 1.9 percentage points from the February 2021 rate of 5.8 percent. The 3.9% figure is the 4th lowest in the series for the month of February.

Since January 2022, the number of not seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 27,154 from 1,971,774 to 1,998,928 in February 2022. When compared to February 2021, the number of not seasonally adjusted employed individuals increased by 87,088.

Since January 2022, the number of not seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 7,968 from 88,091 to 80,123 in February 2022. When compared to February 2021, the number of not seasonally adjusted unemployed individuals decreased by 38,068.

February 2022 metropolitan statistical area (MSA) and parish unemployment rates will be released on April 1, 2022.

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.

Data Considerations

All data published from the Bureau of Labor Statistics is preliminary and is subject to revision on a monthly, quarterly, and annual basis. Revised numbers for previous months are available from the BLS databases located on bls.gov. The revised numbers are available upon release of new data.

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 http://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.