TribLIVE

| Business


 
Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Pittsburgh area unemployment rate rises

On the Grid

From the shale fields to the cooling towers, Trib Total Media covers the energy industry in Western Pennsylvania and beyond. For the latest news and views on gas, coal, electricity and more, check out On the Grid today.

By Thomas Olson
Tuesday, March 19, 2013, 12:27 p.m.
 

Pittsburgh area employers shed 31,900 jobs in January, pushing the region's unemployment rate up to 7.5 percent, the state Department of Labor and Industry said Tuesday.

The seven-county region's jobless rate increased from 7.3 percent in December but remained below state and national unemployment rates.

“That 31,900 is a big number and sort of scary-looking,” said Jake Haulk, an economist and president of the Allegheny Institute for Public Policy, Castle Shannon. “But the drop is largely seasonal,” which is to be expected.

The increase joblessness was driven largely by a loss of 6,900 retailing jobs after the holidays.

In addition, the region lost 5,900 government jobs in January, 3,900 leisure and hospitality industry jobs, 3,800 education and health services jobs, and 3,000 administrative and waste services jobs.

The sector data comes from a survey of employers and is not adjusted for seasonal fluctuations.

Statewide unemployment increased to 8.2 percent in January from 7.9 percent in December. The national jobless rate rose to 7.9 percent from 7.8 percent.

Kurt Rankin, an economist at PNC Financial Services Group, said the December-January decline “is not something to be overly concerned about” because he expects significant gains in February, March and April, which is the time of year when hiring generally picks up.

Haulk added that from January 2012 to this past January, the region added 10,100 private-sector jobs, which he called, “a pretty good increase.”

According to a separate survey of area households, 1,173,800 people were working in January, down from 1,176,100 the month before. The results are adjusted to account for seasonal fluctuations.

About 95,200 people were not working in the Pittsburgh region in January, compared with 92,000 in December. That data is seasonally adjusted.

The Pittsburgh region covers Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Washington and Westmoreland counties.

The region's unemployment rate stood at 6.9 percent in January 2012.

Thomas Olson is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7854 or at tolson@tribweb.com.

 

 
 


Show commenting policy

Most-Read Business Headlines

  1. Auto technology gives mobile computing a new meaning
  2. OPEC decision on crude sets small producers on perilous path, analysts say
  3. Trib 30 index surpasses August high
  4. Energy stocks ‘hammered’ as crude oil tumbles
  5. Earlier openings make Black Friday shopping easier for bargain-hunters
  6. Use credit wisely while holiday shopping
  7. Mirai debut brings  fuel cell future closer
  8. October mine inspections result in 127 citations
  9. Jaguar coupe can outstyle convertible
  10. Change in Freddie, Fannie policy eases buy-backs of foreclosed homes
  11. Committee looks into beneficial uses of coal ash
Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.