Washington State Employment Security Report – May 2002

Washington seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped a slight one-tenth of one percentage point to 7.1 percent in May, Employment Security Commissioner Sylvia P. Mundy announced Tuesday.
The nation’s seasonally adjust unemployment rate fell two-tenths of one percentage point to 5.8 percent.
Washington’s non-adjusted unemploy-ment rate fell two-tenths of one percentage point to 6.9 percent.
“Beyond the typical seasonal gains, the state’s job picture during the month was lackluster,” Mundy said. “We usually see larger gains in construction, retail trade, lodging and amusement and recreation.
Washington added 18,000 nonagricultural wage and salary jobs over the month in May for a non-adjusted increase of 0.7 percent.
That compares to the typical increase of 1.0 percent.
Services represented 6,100 of that gain, with business services, hotels and lodging, and amusement and recreation leading the way.
Retail trade was up 4,600 jobs, with eating and drinking places (+3,200) accounting for most of that increase.
Building materials/garden supplies and food stores were also up notably.
Construction adds 4,600 jobs, mostly in special trade contracting (+3,200).
Manufacturing rose by 1,500 jobs, with seasonal nondurable goods accounting for four-fifths of the gain.
Government was up 700 with the 1,100 gain in local government partially offset by the loss of 500 in state government.
Washington’s seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment, estimated in collaboration with the Office of the Forecast Council, fell by 68,500 jobs, or 2.5 percent, from May 2001 to May 2002.
Non-adjusted data show that manufacturing she 29,200 jobs, with nearly four in five of those jobs lost in durable goods.
Aircraft and parts, in particular, cut 9,600 jobs.
Among nondurable goods, the loss of 3,600 jobs in food processing was the largest.
On the non-manufacturing side, losses outpaced gains.
Construction shed the greatest number of jobs (-13,300) followed by wholesale retail trade (-12,800) and services (-12,000).
Business services lost 14,800 jobs, including 6,800 in computer and data processing.
Health services remained the biggest source of jobs in the services sector with a gain of 7,400.
Transportation, communications and utilities was down 10,300 jobs, while finance, insurance and real estate was up 4,500.
Government added 10,900 jobs with three-fourths of that increase occurring in local government.

May 2002
United States: 5.5 percent
Washington State: 6.9 percent
Pierce County: 7.4 percent