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Juneau has lowest unemployment in state

Unadjusted rate down to 4.4 percent

Posted: May 17, 2013 - 2:49pm  |  Updated: May 18, 2013 - 11:11pm

The unemployment rate in Alaska continued to fall last month, according to the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development, which announced that the seasonally adjusted rate of unemployment declined two-tenths of a percentage point to 6 percent.

The City and Borough of Juneau is tied for the lowest unemployment rate in the state. Before seasonal adjustment, which compensates for the general trend toward the economy having more jobs in summer and fewer in winter, Juneau’s unemployment rate is 4.4 percent, as is the rate for the North Slope Borough.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for the United States is 7.5 percent. Unemployment in the U.S. has been higher than in Alaska since late 2008, the height of last decade’s economic recession.

The seasonally unadjusted unemployment rate in Alaska is 6.3 percent. That is the rate that should be compared to Juneau’s 4.4 percent unemployment rate, the DWLD suggests.

The unemployment rate dropped more than four percentage points in the Hoonah-Angoon Census Area, which suffered from the highest unemployment rate in the state in March. For April, the seasonally unadjusted rate is 18.2 percent.

The Wade Hampton Census Area in Southwest Alaska had the highest unemployment rate in the state in April. Before seasonal adjustment, the rate is 21.4 percent, down slightly from 21.9 percent in March.

The small labor force size of the Hoonah-Angoon Census Area, the Wade Hampton Census Area and many other statistical areas in the state contributes to the volatility of their unemployment numbers.

The unadjusted unemployment rate for Southeast Alaska in April is 6.2 percent.

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