Economic Development

State, Federal Jobless Rates Improve

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The jobs pictures is improving at the federal and state levels, reports released this morning show.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today that total nonfarm employment increased by 295,000 in February and the national unemployment rate edged down to 5.5% for the month, down from 5.7% in January and from 6.7% in February 2014.

In Ohio, the state Department of Job and Family Services reported that the unemployment rate was 5.1% in January, unchanged from the revised 5.1% in December but down from 6.5% in January 2014. Nonfarm wage and salary employment rose 25,100 over the month.

The January statewide unemployment figures were delayed until today because of revisions to the annual benchmark, ODJFS said. The Ohio substate figures, which include unemployment rates for the state’s cities, counties and metropolitan statistical areas, are scheduled to be released Tuesday. The February statewide figures are due out March 20 and the substate figures March 24.

Nationally, job gains occurred in food services and bars, professional and business services, health care, and transportation and warehousing. Mining declined over the month.

In Ohio, employment in goods-producing industries increased, with gains in manufacturing and mining and logging surpassing losses in construction. The private services-providing sector added jobs, with gains in trade, transportation and utilities; education and health services; leisure and hospitality; professional and business services; financial services; other services; and information. Government employment declined.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.