Tri-Cities sees unemployment decline in April

Tri-City Herald Staff WriterMay 21, 2013 

— April brought the Tri-Cities a shower of nonfarm jobs that helped the area see year-over-year nonfarm job growth.

Unemployment dropped to 8.5 in April from March’s rate of 9.5 percent, according to data released Tuesday by the state Employment Security Department.

Overall, the total number of Tri-Citians employed stayed the same between March and April, at about 118,900 people, according to the data. That was about 900 jobs fewer than April 2012.

But the area gained about 500 nonfarm jobs when compared to March. Nonfarm jobs were about 600 higher than April 2012, at 99,600.

Most nonfarm industries saw jobs added in April compared to the same time last year. The two exceptions were professional and business services, a year-over-year drop of 1,100 that reflects Hanford layoffs, and a 100 year-over-year job loss for restaurants.

A total number of 11,100 people were unemployed in the Tri-Cities during April, a drop of 1,400 workers from the month before and 420 fewer people than in April 2012.

The Tri-Cities stayed above the state’s average unemployment rate of 6.5 percent for April.

April unemployment rates for area counties: Adams County, 7.9 percent; Columbia County, 10.1 percent; Grant County, 8.7 percent; Yakima County, 9.7 percent and Walla Walla County, 6.4 percent.

Check back later for updates.

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