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Unemployment Drops in LA Metro Areas

Baton Rouge

Unemployment Rates Decrease in All Louisiana Metro Areas

Unemployment rates declined in all nine Louisiana metro areas in July, according to not seasonally adjusted data released today by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Louisiana added 13,400 more jobs over the year. Baton Rouge and Lake Charles led the state with 6,600 more jobs and 5,600 more jobs, respectively in July, according to a BLS survey of 7,000 Louisiana employers. Baton Rouge has added jobs over the year for 55 consecutive months and Lake Charles has added jobs over the year for 49 consecutive months.

In Baton Rouge, sectors that added the most jobs over the year were professional and business services with 4,200 and construction with 3,200. The leisure and hospitality and construction sectors led Lake Charles in over-the-year growth with 2,500 and 1,400 new jobs, respectively.

In a normal seasonal pattern, Louisiana lost 16,800 nonfarm jobs over the month. Driven by a large decrease in the number of unemployed people in Louisiana, the civilian labor force declined by 14,708 individuals. The state’s unemployment rate declined by 0.4 percentage points to 6.6 percent, according to not seasonally adjusted data.

Nonfarm job losses in Houma and Lafayette are largely attributable to the decline in mining and logging jobs due to the low price of oil. Out of 1,100 jobs lost over the year in Houma, 700 were in mining and logging. In Lafayette, mining and logging lost 2,200 jobs; but, with gains in other sectors, the area netted a loss of 1,800 jobs overall.

Not seasonally adjusted unemployment rates and over-the-year changes in nonfarm employment for each metro area are as follows:

• Alexandria: 6.8 percent, down from 7.3 percent in June; 200 fewer jobs than July 2014.

• Baton Rouge: 5.7 percent, down from 6.2 percent; 6,600 more jobs over the year.

• Hammond: 7.4 percent, down from 8.0 percent; 1,000 more jobs over the year.

• Houma, 5.6 percent, down from 6.0 percent; 1,100 fewer jobs over the year.

• Lafayette: 6.4 percent, down from 6.8 percent; 1,800 fewer jobs over the year.

• Lake Charles: 5.5 percent, down from 5.8 percent; 5,600 more jobs over the year.

• Monroe: 6.9 percent, down from 7.5 percent; 700 fewer jobs over the year.

• New Orleans: 6.4 percent, down from 6.7 percent; 3,800 fewer jobs over the year.

• Shreveport: 7.2 percent, down from 7.7 percent; 500 fewer jobs over the year.

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