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Data & Analysis

Labor Markets - September 2009

 Data
Payroll Employment Growth

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Source: BLS, FRBA
 Data
Payroll Employment Growth by State

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Source: BLS, FRBA
Month-over-Month Change in Employment: August 2009

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Source: BLS
Payroll Employment Momentum: August 2009

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Source: BLS,FRBA
Payroll Employment Momentum: July 2009

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Source: BLS,FRBA
 Data
Unemployment Rates

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Source: BLS
Unemployment Rates: August 2009

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Source: BLS

Payroll Employment
Payroll Employment Momentum
Unemployment Rate
Unemployment Claims

Payroll Employment
According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data, the Sixth District states lost a net 96,500 jobs in August from a month earlier on a seasonally adjusted basis. Job losses were widespread across the District. Georgia shed 35,000 jobs, the third largest month-over-month employment decrease in the nation. The decrease was mainly due to losses in the professional and business and local government sectors. Tennessee lost 15,100 jobs in August, offsetting July's gains. Job losses were also significant in the leisure and hospitality sectors for Alabama and Florida. The nation as a whole lost 216,000 jobs in August.

July employment figures for the District were revised upward by 1,400 to –18,700.

Changes in Payroll Employment
M/M change Y/Y % change
Aug
2009
July
2009
Aug
2009
July
2009
AL –14,000 2,800 –5.0 –4.5
FL –21,500 –10,100 –4.8 –5.0
GA –35,000 –14,700 –6.0 –5.3
LA –1,300 –5,700 –1.5 –1.0
MS –9,600 –5,900 –3.1 –2.3
TN –15,100 14,900 –4.3 –4.0
District –96,500 –18,700 –4.6 –4.3
US –216,000 –276,000 –4.2 –4.2

Payroll Employment Momentum
In August, employment momentum was little changed in most Sixth District States, with most states remaining in Quadrant 3. Short-term employment growth improved slightly in Florida, Tennessee, Alabama, and the United States (less the Sixth District States). Improvements in short-term employment growth reflect a decline in the pace of job losses in recent months.

Both short-term and long-term employment momentum deteriorated in Georgia, moving the state further into the southwest corner of Quadrant 3. Employment momentum picked up slightly in Mississippi, and the state moved up into Quadrant 4.

Unemployment Rate
The overall unemployment rate for the Sixth District states decreased to 10.2 percent in August, above the national rate of 9.7 percent (on a seasonally adjusted basis). Louisiana's and Mississippi's unemployment rates remained below the national level but are still seen as high for these states.

Aug
2009
July
2009
AL 10.4 10.2
FL 10.7 10.8
GA 10.2 10.3
LA 7.8 7.4
MS 9.5 9.7
TN 10.8 10.7
District 10.2 10.3
US 9.7 9.4

Unemployment Claims
After declining in July, average weekly initial claims ticked up in August for Florida and Georgia; further indication that much of the decline in July was due to seasonal distortions. Initial claims also increased in Tennessee and Alabama, before easing in early September. Initial claims picked up significantly in Louisiana. The state has added over 1,500 claims since the first week of August. Although claims have either come down or leveled off from their recessionary peaks in most Sixth District states, current levels still reflect a weak labor market.

Average weekly continuing claims remained elevated in all District states but have declined from their recessionary peaks in all states except Louisiana and Georgia. Elevated levels of continuing claims are indicative of weak hiring rates.


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