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Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton MSA’s civilian labor force falls by 3,600 during past year

01.28.10

January 2010 Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton edition of The Union News

MSA’s civilian labor force falls by 3,600 during past year

BY PAUL LEESON
THEUNIONNEWSSWB@AOL.COM

REGION, December 29th- According to labor data provided by the Pennsylvania, Department of Labor and Industry, the region’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate is 9.4 percent, decreasing by three-tenths of a percentage point from the previous report, which was released approximately four weeks before. The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) includes Lackawanna, Luzerne and Wyoming Counties. Twelve months ago the unemployment rate for the region was 7.0 percent.

The unemployment rate in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is 8.5 percent, decreasing by four-tenths of a percentage point from the previous report. Pennsylvania has a seasonally adjusted civilian labor force of 6,328,000 with 540,000 not working and 5,788,000 with employment. The national unemployment rate is 10.0 percent, decreasing by two-tenths of a percentage point from the previous month.

The main reason the unemployment rate fell in the region and in Pennsylvania was because of the decrease of the civilian labor force and residents that have exhausted their unemployment benefits and have stopped looking for work.

The civilian labor force in the MSA has fallen by 3,600 during the past twelve months, while the labor force in Pennsylvania has fallen by 167,000. At the same time the region has 253,100 civilians working, decreasing by 10,200 from twelve months before.

There are 15,375,000 civilians in the nation without employment. That number also does not include civilians that have exhausted their unemployment benefits and have stopped looking for work.

There are 26,400 residents in the MSA not working, increasing by 6,600 from twelve months before. That number also does not include civilians who unemployment benefits have expired and stopped looking for work.

The MSA has the fifth largest labor force in Pennsylvania. The Philadelphia MSA has the largest labor force at 2,950,300 with 261,600 not working; the Pittsburgh MSA is second at 1,110,100 with 95,100 without jobs; the Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton MSA has the third largest labor force at 416,400 with 38,700 not working; and the Harrisburg/Carlisle MSA has the fourth largest civilian labor force at 280,300 with 21,000 without employment.

Of the 14 MSA’s within Pennsylvania, the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton MSA is tied with the Erie MSA for the highest unemployment rate. The Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton MSA has the second highest unemployment rate in the commonwealth at 9.3 percent, with the Williamsport MSA, the Reading MSA and the Johnstown MSA tied for the third highest unemployment rate.

The State College MSA has the lowest unemployment rate in Pennsylvania at 5.9 percent. The Lebanon MSA has the second lowest unemployment rate in the state at 7.0 percent with the Harrisburg/Carlisle MSA and the Lancaster MSA tied for the third lowest at 7.5 percent.

Lackawanna County has the lowest unemployment rate in the MSA at 9.0 percent, which decreased by three-tenths of a percentage point from the previous report and jumped two and four-tenths percentage points from one year ago.

Lackawanna County has a labor force of 106,200, unchanged from the report before but fell by 1,400 during the past twelve months. There are 9,500 Lackawanna County residents without jobs, decreasing by 300 from the previous report but increasing by 2,400 from one year ago. That number also does not include residents that have exhausted their unemployment benefits and have stopped looking for work.

Luzerne County has the highest unemployment rate in the MSA at 9.7 percent, which decreased by four-tenths of a percentage point from the report before and increased by a whopping two and five-tenths percentage points from twelve months ago. The labor force in Luzerne County decreased by 5,800 during the past year. Of the labor force 15,400 do not have a job, increasing by 3,800 from one year ago.

Wyoming County has a unemployment rate of 9.4 percent, increasing by two and five-tenths percentage points from one year ago. Wyoming County has a labor force of 14,300, increasing by 200 from the previous report and dropping by 200 from one year ago. There are 1,400 Wyoming County residents without jobs, increasing by 200 from the previous report and jumping by 400 from twelve months before.

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