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Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton Region’s unemployment rate decreases to 9.6 percent

03.29.10

APRIL 2010, Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton edition of The Union News

Region’s unemployment rate decreases to 9.6 percent

BY PAUL LEESON
THEUNIONNEWSABE@AOL.COM

LEHIGH VALLEY, March 17th- According to labor data provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry Center for Workforce Information and Analysis in Harrisburg, the Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased by one-tenth of a percentage point to 9.6 percent. The MSA includes Lehigh, Northampton, and Carbon Counties of Pennsylvania and Warren County, New Jersey. Twelve months ago the unemployment rate for the region was 7.2 percent.

There are fourteen Metropolitan Statistical Area’s in Pennsylvania and the Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton Metropolitan Statistical Area is tied with the Reading MSA and the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre MSA for the fourth highest unemployment rate.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Pennsylvania is 8.8 percent, unchanged from the previous report, which was released approximately four weeks ago. There are 564,000 Pennsylvania residents without jobs. Pennsylvania has a seasonally adjusted workforce of 6,421,000 and 5,856,000 of them have employment. The national seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was reported to be 9.7 percent, decreasing by three-tenths of a percentage point from the previous report. However, the rate does not include workers who benefits have been exhausted and have stopped looking for work. There are 14,837,000 residents nationally unemployed which also does not include workers who benefits have been exhausted.

The data shows the Williamsport MSA has the highest unemployment rate in the state at 9.9 percent. The Erie MSA has the second highest unemployment rate in the state at 9.8 percent, with the the Johnstown MSA the third highest unemployment rate in the state at 9.7 percent.

The State College MSA has the lowest unemployment rate in Pennsylvania at 6.3 percent, with the Lebanon MSA second at 7.5 percent and the Altoona MSA has the third lowest unemployment rate in Pennsylvania at 7.9 percent.

The Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton MSA has the third largest civilian labor force in Pennsylvania at 427,100, rising by 5,000 during the past twelve months. There are 41,000 residents in the MSA without jobs, rising by 10,600 during the past twelve months. Those numbers does not include workers who have exhausted their benefits.

The Philadelphia MSA has the largest civilian labor force in Pennsylvania at 2,996,900 with 269,500 residents not working. The Pittsburgh MSA has the second largest civilian labor force at 1,240,100, with 100,000 residents unemployed. The Harrisburg/Carlisle MSA has the fourth largest civilian labor force in the state at 288,700, with 22,800 residents unemployed. The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre MSA has the fifth largest civilian labor force at 278,800 with 27,300 residents not working.

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