Labor Seal NYS Department of Labor                          

Contact Leo Rosales Cell: 518-281-6167 Office: 518-457-5519 Email: leo.rosales@labor.ny.gov www.labor.ny.gov
Highest Statewide Unemployment Rate Since 1983
Number of Unemployed in New York State Reaches New High

Albany, NY (September 17, 2009) - Can't See the video? Click Here to Get Adobe Flash Player. New York State's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate climbed from 8.6 percent in July to 9.0 percent in August 2009, its highest level since April 1983, the State Labor Department reported today. New York City's rate also increased, jumping from 9.5 percent in July to 10.3 percent in August, its highest level since May 1993. In August 2009, the number of unemployed in New York State and New York City increased to 874,300 and 415,800, respectively, their highest levels on record (current data extend back to 1976). After seasonal adjustment, New York State's private sector job count decreased by 2,200, or less than 0.1 percent, to 7,083,300 in August 2009. The statewide total nonfarm job count (private plus public sectors) decreased over the month by 3,800, or less than 0.1 percent, to 8,645,400 in August 2009.

"Our latest labor market report indicates that employers in New York State cut jobs at a more modest pace than employers nationwide and our statewide unemployment rate remained below the nation's rate. However, the number of unemployed New Yorkers in August reached its highest recorded level," said Peter A. Neenan, Ph.D., Director of the Division of Research and Statistics.

Note: When comparing different months, seasonally adjusted data provide the most valid comparison, for example, July 2009 versus August 2009. Non-seasonally adjusted data are valuable in year-to-year comparisons of the same month, for example, August 2008 versus August 2009.

1.) Unemployment rates (seasonally adjusted):

New York State's unemployment rate, after seasonal adjustment, increased from 8.6 percent in July to 9.0 percent in August 2009. In August 2008, the state's rate was 5.7 percent. The U.S. rate was 9.7 percent in August 2009, up from 9.4 percent in July. In August 2008, the nation's rate was 6.2 percent. New York City's rate increased from 9.5 percent in July 2009 to 10.3 percent in August 2009. In August 2008, the city's rate was 5.9 percent. The rate outside of New York City was 8.0 percent in August 2009, up from July's 7.9 percent. In August 2008, the rate outside of New York City was 5.5 percent.

Unemployment Rates* (seasonally adjusted)
 
  August 2009* July 2009 August 2008
New York State 9.0 8.6 5.7
United States 9.7 9.4 6.2
New York City 10.3 9.5 5.9
NYS, excluding NYC 8.0 7.9 5.5
*Data are preliminary and subject to change.

2.) Unemployment Insurance, EUC08 and Extended Benefits data (not seasonally adjusted):

Under the regular Unemployment Insurance (regular UI) program, individuals who are involuntarily unemployed through no fault of their own may be eligible for up to 26 weeks of benefits as long as they remain ready, willing and able to work, and are actively seeking employment. Under the temporary federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC08) program, enacted on June 30, 2008 as part of the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008, claimants who have exhausted their 26 weeks of regular benefits are eligible to receive up to 13 weeks of additional benefits. Federal legislation signed into law on November 21, 2008 added up to 20 more weeks to the original 13 weeks of EUC08 benefits.

State legislation signed into law on May 20, 2009 provides additional weeks of Extended Benefits (EB) for individuals who have exhausted their EUC08 benefits. Currently, up to 20 weeks of EB are available because the State's three-month average seasonally adjusted unemployment rate exceeds 8.0 percent (the thresholds for 13 weeks and 20 weeks of EB are three-month average seasonally adjusted unemployment rates of 6.5 percent and 8.0 percent, respectively). Reference week beneficiaries data for these programs are noted below. (Note: For these programs, the reference week refers to the week containing the 19th day of the month.)

Program and Data Item* August 2009 July 2009 August 2008
Regular UI, reference week beneficiaries
310,666
328,388
166,781
Regular UI, year-to-date beneficiaries
882,044
834,548
530,271
EUC08, reference week beneficiaries
182,550
159,055
80,544
EUC08, year-to-date beneficiaries
388,548
338,660
96,586
Extended UI (EB), reference week beneficiaries
78,672
71,254
NA
Extended UI (EB), year-to-date beneficiaries
92,157
81,166
NA
*Data are preliminary and subject to revision.

3.) Job data (seasonally adjusted):

New York State and the nation, July 2009 - August 2009:

The number of private sector jobs in New York State decreased by 2,200, or less than 0.1 percent, to 7,083,300 in August 2009, on a seasonally adjusted basis. Nationally, the number of private sector jobs decreased by 0.2 percent over the same period. After seasonal adjustment, the number of nonfarm jobs (private plus public sectors) in the state decreased over the month by 3,800, or less than 0.1 percent, to 8,645,400 in August 2009. Nationally, the number of seasonally adjusted nonfarm jobs decreased by 0.2 percent in August.

4.) Nonfarm jobs since August 2008 (not seasonally adjusted):

  Total nonfarm jobs   -167,500
  Private sector jobs   -207,200

Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs (private plus public sectors) in New York State decreased by 167,500, or 1.9 percent, and the number of private sector jobs decreased by 207,200, or 2.8 percent. Nationally, the number of nonfarm jobs decreased by 4.4 percent and the number of private sector jobs decreased by 5.1 percent between August 2008 and August 2009.

Looking over the year, government (+39,700) added the most jobs of any sector, with sector growth focused in local government. Educational and health services had the second largest job growth (+31,800), with increases in both health care and social assistance (+17,900) and educational services (+13,900). The job count in other services (+7,500) also increased over the year.

Trade, transportation and utilities (-64,200) registered the largest over-the-year drop among declining sectors, with losses concentrated in the economically sensitive wholesale and retail trade industry group (-51,900). Professional and business services lost 51,500 jobs over the year with losses focused in administrative and support services. Manufacturing lost 45,200 jobs between August 2008 and August 2009 with most of the loss in durable goods (-33,500), especially fabricated metal manufacturing (-7,500). Financial activities (-42,900) had the next highest set of job losses, with the securities industry (-29,700) experiencing the largest decline. The job count also decreased over the year in construction, information, leisure and hospitality, and natural resources and mining.

Change in Jobs by Sector,
August 2008-August 2009
Sectors with Job Gains:
     Government +39,700
     Educational & Health Services +31,800
     Other Services +7,500
 
Sectors with Job Losses:
     Trade, Transportation & Utilities -64,200
     Professional & Business Services -51,500
     Manufacturing -45,200
     Financial Activities -42,900
     Construction -26,000
     Information -12,500
     Leisure & Hospitality -3,900
     Natural Resources & Mining -300

5.) Nonfarm jobs since July 2009 (not seasonally adjusted):

  Total nonfarm jobs   -36,300
  Private sector jobs   -12,900

In August 2009, New York State had 8,628,900 total nonfarm jobs, including 7,119,600 private sector jobs. From July 2009 to August 2009, the number of nonfarm jobs decreased by 36,300 and the number of private sector jobs decreased by 12,900. On average, in the previous ten years, the number of nonfarm jobs in New York decreased by 24,900 from July to August, and the number of private sector jobs decreased by 1,200.

The not seasonally adjusted job count increased over the month in professional and business services (+2,200), construction (+700), and manufacturing (+200). The job count in government (-23,400), information (-3,200), educational and health services (-3,100), financial activities (-2,900), trade, transportation and utilities (-2,900), leisure and hospitality (-2,000), and other services (-1,900) decreased over the month. Natural resources and mining employment was unchanged in August.

6.) New York State nonfarm job highlights since July 2009 (not seasonally adjusted):

Professional and business services
This month's hiring increase was concentrated in administrative and support services, reflecting over-the-month gains in employment services.

Construction
Construction employment experienced its typical July-August seasonal increase, with gains centered in specialty trade contractors.

Manufacturing
The manufacturing job count increased in August, with most of the sector's gain in durable goods, particularly fabricated metal product manufacturing.

Natural resources and mining
The number of jobs in natural resources and mining was unchanged in August.

Other services
This sector's over-the-month job loss was centered in religious, grantmaking, civic, professional and similar organizations.

Leisure and hospitality
Leisure and hospitality employment decreased over the month, with job losses centered in arts, entertainment and recreation.

Trade, transportation and utilities
Sector employment losses in August were focused in transportation and warehousing, reflecting seasonal layoffs by many private providers of school bus transportation.

Financial activities
Employment losses in financial activities were largest in finance and insurance, reflecting losses at securities firms.

Educational and health services
Sector employment decreased over the month, with health care and social assistance losing the most jobs in August.

Information
Publishing industries (except Internet) accounted for most of this sector's employment losses between July and August.

Government
Public sector employment levels decreased over the month due to reductions at the local government level. Seasonal staff reductions by local public elementary and secondary schools contributed to this over-the-month decline.

7.) Metropolitan Areas:

Job Growth and Unemployment Rates (not seasonally adjusted):

Note: All data reported in this section are not seasonally adjusted; the most valid comparisons with this type of data are year-to-year comparisons of the same month, for example, August 2008 versus August 2009.

Albany-Schenectady-Troy: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 9,300, or 2.1 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 9,500, or 2.7 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 7.0 percent in August 2009, compared with 7.1 in July and 4.9 in August 2008.

Binghamton: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 3,300, or 2.9 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 3,500, or 3.8 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 8.2 percent in August 2009, compared with 8.3 in July and 5.4 in August 2008.

Buffalo-Niagara Falls: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 13,800, or 2.5 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 12,400, or 2.7 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 8.4 percent in August 2009, compared with 8.6 in July and 5.8 in August 2008.

Glens Falls: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 2,700, or 4.6 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 2,500, or 5.1 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 6.8 percent in August 2009, compared with 6.9 in July and 4.7 in August 2008.

Ithaca: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 700, or 1.2 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 800, or 1.5 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 6.3 percent in August 2009, compared with 6.3 in July and 4.6 in August 2008.

Kingston: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 400, or 0.6 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 1,400, or 2.9 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 8.1 percent in August 2009, compared with 8.1 in July and 5.7 in August 2008.

Nassau-Suffolk: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 35,500, or 2.8 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 37,000, or 3.4 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 7.3 percent in August 2009, compared with 7.4 in July and 5.1 in August 2008.

New York City (five boroughs): Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 57,100, or 1.5 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 96,600, or 3.0 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 10.3 percent in August 2009, compared with 9.8 in July and 6.0 in August 2008.

Poughkeepsie-Newburgh-Middletown: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 6,400, or 2.5 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 6,400, or 3.1 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 8.1 percent in August 2009, compared with 8.2 in July and 5.4 in August 2008.

Putnam-Rockland-Westchester: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 11,200, or 1.9 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 10,500, or 2.2 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 7.3 percent in August 2009, compared with 7.3 in July and 5.0 in August 2008.

Rochester: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 10,500, or 2.0 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 10,300, or 2.3 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 8.1 percent in August 2009, compared with 8.2 in July and 5.5 in August 2008.

Syracuse: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 6,500, or 2.0 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 6,800, or 2.5 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 7.9 percent in August 2009, compared with 8.1 in July and 5.5 in August 2008.

Utica-Rome: Since August 2008, the number of nonfarm jobs has decreased by 1,900, or 1.4 percent, and the number of private sector jobs has decreased by 2,500, or 2.5 percent. The area's unemployment rate was 7.1 percent in August 2009, compared with 7.2 in July and 5.2 in August 2008.

Note: Labor force statistics, including the unemployment rate, for New York and every other state are based on statistical regression models specified by the U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Jobs data for New York are obtained from a survey of 18,000 business establishments. Jobs data exclude agricultural workers, the self-employed, unpaid family workers and domestic workers in private households.

See State and Area Jobs Data

See State and Area Unemployment Rates

See Jobs and Unemployment Fact Sheet

See Labor Market Overview