Delaware unemployment rate trickles down in April
DOVER – Delaware’s unemployment rate trickled down 10 basis points in April, continuing a downward trend, but it remains above the national trend, according to state officials.
April saw a net loss of 400 jobs but an additional 1,200 jobseekers in the labor force, according to the monthly report released Friday morning. It was the first time in a year that Delaware saw a net monthly loss in jobs.
The labor force captures not only workers and those receiving unemployment benefits, but also those in search of work who aren’t receiving assistance. As workers stop seeking work, for a variety of reasons ranging from retirement to child care needs, they are no longer counted as being unemployed in the state.
Delaware’s April unemployment rate dropped to 4.3% but still sits nearly 90 basis points from the national average, which also fell 10 basis points to 3.4% last month.
Delaware ranked tied for 47th in unemployment rate among states in March, according to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data. It ranked only ahead of California and Nevada, and was tied with Washington state. The First State has fallen behind Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland, which ranked 45th, 33rd and 11th at 4.1%, 3.5%, and 2.5%, respectively. South Dakota had the lowest rate at 1.9% while Nevada had the highest at 5.4%.
The Delaware Department of Labor’s report is taken monthly during the calendar week that contains the 12th day. The state recorded 21,500 unemployed people last month, a decrease of 500 people over March.
The official monthly unemployment figure is created by looking at continuous unemployment insurance claims as well as a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics survey of residents on their employment status. It tracks not only those receiving benefits, but also those who are ineligible, such as terminated employees, those who have resigned and the self-employed.
The state’s three counties saw differing rates of unemployment in April, with New Castle, Kent and Sussex counties reporting rates of 3.7%, 4.5% and 4%, respectively – although those statistics aren’t seasonally adjusted. Wilmington and Dover, the state’s two most populous cities, have seen an even greater impact in job losses, where 5.5% and 5.3% of workers were unemployed, respectively.
Leading job gains last month was the government, which added 500 jobs. Meanwhile, the education and health sector added 100 in the only other net sector gain.
Leading job losses was the construction sector, which lost 500 jobs, while manufacturing lost 200; the trade, transportation and utilities sector lost 200, and professional and business services lost 100.
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