Delaware jobless rate up, but other stats match up with national figures


Delaware’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in September rose to 4 percent from 3.9 percent in August.

That’s three-tenths of one percent higher than the national figure.

The Delaware Department of Labor reported that  19,300 Delawareans were jobless in September compared to 21,700 in September 2017.

The US unemployment rate was 3.7 percent in September 2018, down from 3.9 percent  in August 2018. In September 2017 the US unemployment rate was 4.2 percent, while Delaware’s rate was 4.5 percent.

In September 2018, seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment was 463,600, up from 462,600 in August 2018. Since September 2017, Delaware’s total nonfarm jobs have increased by a net gain of 6,900, a rise of 1.5 percent,Nationally, jobs during that period increased by 1.7 percent.

 Delaware Labor Department officials said the disparity between the state and national rates does not mean  that the labor market in the state and nation are going in different directions

For example, since September 2017, the number of employed residents in the US is up by 1.1 percent, while Delaware is up 1.9 percent. The number of unemployed is down 12 percent in the US and 7 percent in Delaware.

Also, the average (mean) unemployment period  is lower in Delaware by a full three weeks at 20.4 weeks compared with 23.4 weeks across the US.

“This indicates that very long spells of unemployment are a little less common in Delaware – 18 percent of the unemployed have been out of work for over six months in the state, versus 22 percent in the nation,” the state Labor Department noted.

Both nationally and in Delaware, a big factor is  the tight labor market.

 Economists are watching wage increase figures to see if inflation heats up. (So far, wage increases have remained moderate. The Federal Reserve has upped interest rates drawing the ire of President Trump.

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