Business Digest

Posted: Thursday, August 25, 2005

Unemployment rate hits four-year low

Alaska's unemployment rate fell to 5.8 percent in July, the lowest percentage since May 2001, according to the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

As expected in July, seasonal employers including seafood processors, construction companies, hotels and restaurants added a significant number of jobs in the month, pushing the rate lower.

Juneau's unemployment rate was at 4.8 percent, while Anchorage and Fairbanks reported 5 and 5.1 percent, respectively. The Denali Borough had the state's lowest rate at 2 percent and Wade Hampton had the highest at 25.4 percent.

Preliminary estimates of payroll employment show an over-the-month increase of 8,000 jobs. Seafood processing added 6,900 jobs in July as the salmon fisheries neared peak production, while the construction and hospitality industries hit full stride as well.

Government employment fell by 4,000 in July due mostly to the summer academic break.

IT development firm relocates downtown

Custom software development firm Resource Data Inc. has relocated its Juneau office to a larger suite at 431 North Franklin St., Suite 301. It was formerly located on Seward Street.

The local office added six employees this year, while business has picked up from state contracts, said branch manager Rick Pannell.

The state uses a bidding technique called task ordering, in which vendors bid at once and then the state can rank the companies by the best offers. Task ordering is speedier than the normal bidding process, Pannell said.

Founded in Alaska in 1986, RDI employs 70 information technology professionals that provide clients with database, Internet solutions. RDI was named "Alaska's Largest Software Development and Consulting Firm" by the Alaska Journal of Commerce in 2003 and 2004.

The telephone number remains the same: 586-6831.

• Business Briefs are compiled by Empire reporter Andrew Petty. If you know of any businesses opening, closing or relocating, or of other business-related news, please contact him at

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