District of Columbia Department of Employment Services

11/20/2020 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 11/20/2020 21:20

District of Columbia Unemployment Rate Improves to 8.2 Percent in October

Washington, DC - The District of Columbia's Department of Employment Services reported today that the seasonally adjusted preliminary unemployment rate was 8.2 percent in October; this was a decrease of 0.8 percentage point from the revised September rate.
The District's preliminary October job estimates show an increase of 5,700 jobs, for a total of 753,700 jobs in the District. The private sector increased by 4,800 jobs. The public sector increased by 900 jobs. The numbers are drawn from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) through its monthly survey of the District of Columbia's employers.

'The Bowser Administration continues to prioritize access to training, resources and career opportunities,' said DOES Director Dr. Unique Morris-Hughes. 'Bridging the gap for our most vulnerable residents, workers and business is the focus of our work and critical to the District's economic stability as we continue working in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) public health emergency.'

The number of employed District residents increased by 1,700 from 363,600 in September 2020 to 365,300 in October 2020. The civilian labor force for the District decreased by 1,500 from 399,600 in September 2020 to 398,100 in October 2020. The labor force participation rate decreased by 0.3 percentage point from 68.8 percent in September 2020 to 68.5 percent in October 2020.

Employment Overview

  • Manufacturing sector remained the same, after remaining the same the prior month. With employment at 1,200 jobs, jobs decreased by 200 or 14.29 percent from a year ago.
  • Mining, Logging and Construction sector increased by 200 jobs, after a decrease of 200 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 15,300 jobs, jobs increased by 400 or 2.68 percent from a year ago.
  • Trade Transportation and Utilities sector increased by 500 jobs, after an increase of 100 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 32,300 jobs, jobs decreased by 1,200 or 3.58 percent from a year ago.
  • Information sector remained the same, after remaining the same the prior month. With employment at 18,700 jobs, jobs decreased by 1,800 or 8.78 percent from a year ago.
  • Financial Activities sector decreased by 100 jobs, after remaining the same the prior month. With employment at 28,700 jobs, jobs decreased by 1,200 jobs or 4.01 percent from a year ago.
  • Professional and Business Services sector increased by 1,300 jobs, after a decrease of 2,200 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 163,900 jobs, jobs decreased by 10,700 or 6.13 percent from a year ago
  • Educational and Health Services sector increased by 1,700 jobs, after an increase of 1,200 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 120,900 jobs, jobs decreased by 10, 600 or 8.06 percent from a year ago.
  • Leisure and Hospitality sector increased by 1,700 jobs, after an increase of 6,800 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 52,800 jobs, jobs decreased by 29,600 or 35.92 percent from a year ago.
  • Other Services sector decreased by 500 jobs, after a decrease of 500 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 75,700 jobs, jobs decreased by 2,100 or 2.7 percent from a year ago.

Labor Force Overview

  • The number of employed District residents increased by 1,700 over the month to 365,300. The civilian labor force decreased by 1,500 to 398,100.
  • One year ago, total employment was 390,100 and the civilian labor force was 411,900.

The number of unemployed was 21,800, and the unemployment rate was 5.3 percent.

NOTES: The October 2020 final and November 2020 preliminary unemployment rates, will be released on Friday, December 18, 2020. Historic1l jobs and labor force estimates for the District of Columbia and detailed labor market information is available here.

Technical Notes: Estimates of industry employment and unemployment levels are arrived through the use of two different monthly surveys.

Industry employment data is derived from the Current Employment Statistics (CES) survey, a monthly survey of business establishments conducted by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of the US Department of Labor, which provides estimates of employment, hours, and earnings data broken down by industry for the nation as a whole, all states, and most major metropolitan areas (often referred to as the 'establishment' survey).

Resident employment and unemployment data are mainly derived from the District's portion of the national Current Population Survey (CPS), a household survey conducted each month by the US Census Bureau under contract with BLS, which provides input to the Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program (often referred to as the 'household' survey).

Both industry and household estimates are revised each month based on additional information from updated survey reports compiled by BLS. In addition, these estimates are benchmarked (revised) annually based on actual counts from the District's Unemployment Compensation Law administrative records and other data.

Data reflects 2019 annual benchmark revisions.
Industry employment data is not seasonally adjusted.