Vermont Labor Market

The Department of Labor announced that the seasonally-adjusted statewide unemployment rate for August was 2.8%. This reflects no change from the revised July rate. The national rate in August was 3.9%. As of the prior month’s preliminary data, the Burlington-South Burlington Metropolitan NECTA was tied for the nineteenth lowest unemployment rate in the country for all metropolitan areas. Overall, Vermont’s unemployment rate was tied for fifth lowest in the country for the same time period.

The Vermont seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate held steady in August at a level of 2.8%. The comparable United States rate in August was 3.9%, which was also unchanged from the revised July estimate. The seasonally-adjusted Vermont data for August show the Vermont civilian labor force decreased by 860 from the prior month’s revised estimate. The number of employed persons decreased by 904 and the number of unemployed persons increased by 44. None of these changes were statistically significant in the seasonally-adjusted series.

The August unemployment rates for Vermont’s 17 labor market areas ranged from 2.2% in White River Junction to 4.0% in Derby (note: local labor market area unemployment rates are not seasonally-adjusted). For comparison, the August unadjusted unemployment rate for Vermont was 2.8% which reflects a decrease of one-tenth of one percentage point from the revised unadjusted July level and a decrease of one-tenth of one percentage point from a year ago.

The preliminary ‘not-seasonally-adjusted’ jobs estimates for August show an increase of 200 jobs when compared to the revised July numbers. There was an increase of 100 jobs between the preliminary and the revised July estimates due to the inclusion of more data. The monthly increase seen in the August numbers was primarily attributable to seasonal activity related to public education. The broader economic trends can be detected by focusing on the over-the-year changes in this data series. As detailed in the preliminary ‘not-seasonally-adjusted’ August data, Total Private industries have decreased by 1,600 jobs (-0.6%) and Government (including public education) employment has decreased by 500 jobs (-1.0%) in the past year.

The seasonally-adjusted data for August reports a decrease of 800 jobs from the revised July data. As with the ‘not-seasonally-adjusted’ data, this over-the-month change is from the revised July numbers which experienced an increase of 300 jobs from the preliminary estimates. The seasonally-adjusted over-the-month changes in August were mixed at the sector level. Those with a notable increase include: Real Estate, Rental & Leasing (+100 jobs or +3.2%), Non-Durable Goods Manufacturing (+200 jobs or +1.9%), and Private Education Services (+200 jobs or +1.5%). Sectors with a notable decrease include: Mining & Logging (-100 jobs or -12.5%), Arts, Entertainment & Recreation (-100 jobs or -1.9%), and State Government (-300 jobs or -1.6%).