Jobless rates down over the year in 277 of 389 metro areas

April 08, 2020

Unemployment rates trended downward for the month of February in 277 of the 389 metropolitan states compared to twelve months earlier. According to Bureau Labor Statistics (BLS), unemployment rates were, “higher in 80 areas, and unchanged in 32 areas.” Jobless rates lower than 3% were recorded in 73 areas while 6 areas posted rates of at least 10.0%. Non-farm payroll employment rose in 34 metropolitan areas and was stable in the remaining 355 areas. The national unemployment rate as at February 2020 stood at 3.8%, not seasonally adjusted, down from 4.1% a year earlier.

Metropolitan Division Unemployment (Not Seasonally Adjusted)

Eleven of the most populous metropolitan areas are made up of 38 metropolitan divisions, which are essentially separately identifiable employment centers. Miami-Miami Beach-Kendall, FL, in February experienced the lowest unemployment rate among the divisions, 1.5%. Whereas, Philadelphia, PA, however, experienced the highest division rate, 5.4%.

Moreover, BLS stated, “31 metropolitan divisions had over-the-year unemployment rate decreases, 5 had increases, and 2 had no change. The largest rate decline occurred in Elgin, IL (-1.6 percentage points). Montgomery County-Bucks County-Chester County, PA, and Philadelphia, PA, had the largest rate increases (+0.5 percentage point each).”

Metropolitan Division Nonfarm Employment (Not Seasonally Adjusted)

Nonfarm payroll employment rose in 11 of the 38 metropolitan divisions over the year and was stable in 27 divisions in February. The largest over-the-year increase in employment among the metropolitan divisions took place in Dallas-Plano-Irving, TX (+95,200), followed by New York Jersey City-White Plains, NY-NJ (+87,200), and Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, CA (+83,500).

Furthermore, the largest over-the-year percentage increases in employment were observed in Dallas-Plano-Irving, TX (+3.6%), and San Francisco-Redwood City-South San Francisco, CA, and Seattle-Bellevue Everett, WA (+3.0% each).