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Lehigh Valley unemployment rate unchanged from previous report at 8.1 percent

08.07.12

AUGUST 2012, Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton edition of The Union News

Lehigh Valley unemployment rate unchanged from previous report at 8.1 percent

BY PAUL LEESON
THEUNIONNEWSABE@AOL.COM

REGION, July 7th- 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 is 8.1 percent, unchanged from the previous month. The Metropolitan Statistical Area includes Lehigh, Northampton, and Carbon Counties of Pennsylvania and Warren County, New Jersey. Twelve months ago the unemployment rate for the region was 8.7 percent.

There are fourteen Metropolitan Statistical Area’s in Pennsylvania and the Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton MSA has the third highest unemployment rate.

The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton MSA continues to have the highest unemployment rate in Pennsylvania at 8.7 percent. The Philadelphia MSA and the Johnstown MSA are tied for the second highest unemployment rate at 8.2 percent.

The State College MSA has the lowest unemployment rate in Pennsylvania at 5.5 percent, unchanged from the previous report, which was released around four weeks before. The Lebanon MSA has the second lowest unemployment rate in Pennsylvania at 6.1 percent and the Lancaster MSA has the third lowest at 6.2 percent.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Pennsylvania is 7.4 percent, also unchanged from the previous report and dropping by six-tenths of a percentage point from twelve months before.

There are 475,000 Pennsylvania residents without jobs, but that number does not include residents that have exhausted their unemployment benefits and stopped looking for work.

Pennsylvania has a seasonally adjusted workforce of 6,452,000 and 5,977,000 of them have employment with 475,000 without jobs.

The national seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was reported to be 8.2 percent, increasing by one-tenth of a percentage point from the previous report. That number also does not include civilians that have exhausted their unemployment benefits and have stopped looking for work.

The Allentown/Bethlehem/Easton MSA has the third largest labor force in Pennsylvania with 425,900 civilians, increasing by 200 from the previous report and rising by 2,700 during the past twelve months.

The Philadelphia MSA has the largest labor force at 2,992,800 with 245,400 not working; the Pittsburgh MSA has the second largest labor force at 1,244,100 with 84,500 without jobs; the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre MSA has the fourth largest civilian labor force in the commonwealth at 286,600 with 26,000 civilians without jobs. The Harrisburg/Carlisle MSA has the fifth largest labor force at 284,700 with 19,500 unemployed civilians.

There are 12,720,000 residents nationally unemployed but counting workers that have exhausted their unemployment benefits or have been unable to find full-time work there are more than 16.3 million Americans without jobs. After workers have exhausted their unemployment benefits they are no longer counted as unemployed unless they continue to apply for work. During the past four-weeks more than 115,000 workers unemployment benefits expired.

Carbon County has the highest unemployment rate in the MSA at 9.0 percent, unchanged from the previous report and dropping by one full percentage point from twelve months ago. Carbon County has a civilian labor force of 31,900, with 2,900 residents without jobs.

Northampton County unemployment rate is 8.0 percent, increasing by two-tenths of a percentage point from the previous report and dropping by six-tenths of a percentage point during the past twelve months. Northampton County has a civilian labor-force of 153,200, with 12,200 without jobs.

Lehigh County also has a unemployment rate of 8.0 percent, unchanged from the previous report and dropping by six-tenths of a percentage point from twelve months ago. Lehigh County has a civilian labor force of 181,000 with 14,400 residents jobless.

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