Jobless rate in Delaware increases to 3.7 percent

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Signs of tougher times ahead for job seekers have appeared as Delaware’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in October rose to 3.7 percent, up from 3.5 percent in September.

The number of unemployed 17,900 unemployed Delawareans in October 2019 compared to 17,200 in October 2018. The nation’s unemployment rate was 3.6 percent in October 2019, up from 3.5 percent in September 2019. In October 2018 the US unemployment rate was 3.8 percent, while Delaware’s rate was 3.6 percent

In October 2019, seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment was 468,900, down from 469,400 in September 2019. Since October 2018, Delaware’s total nonfarm jobs have increased by a net gain of +6,500, a rise of 1.4 percent. Nationally, jobs during that period also increased 1.4 percent.

The commentary accompanying the jobs report indicated “underlying signs of weakness in the labor market.”

The commentary, citing unpublished unemployment data from the Delaware Current Population Survey using 12-month averages show that the share of job losers has increased to 75 percent of the unemployed from just under 40 percent one year ago.

By contrast, share of job leavers and re-entrants who voluntarily enter the pool of unemployed seeking better opportunities has fallen to under 20 percent from just over 50 percent one year ago.

“The increase in the number of job losers combined with a decrease in voluntary unemployment of job leavers and re-entrants seeking better opportunities could be a sign of labor market weakness in the months ahead,” the commentary concluded.

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