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Alaska's Unemployment Rate Unchanged In October
Ketchikan's Unemployment Rate Rises to 7.9 percent


November 24, 2003
Monday - 12:15 am

Alaska's unemployment rate remained at 6.8 percent in October as both employment and unemployment numbers fell slightly. The comparable national rate (not seasonally adjusted) fell two-tenths of a percentage point to 5.6 eprcent. Dan Robinson, a labor economist with the Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Develpment, reported the

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According to Robinson, as expected in October, Alaska's employment continued its seasonal contraction. Approximately 2,500 fewer Alaskans were employed in October than in September. Generally the decline in employment produces a corresponding, though smaller, increase unemployment. This month's numbers show a slight decrease in unemployment, however.

Ketchikan's unemployment rate rose from 5.7 percent in September to 7.9 percent in October. In September 2003 the number reported employed was 7,245 and in October 2003 the number reported employed was 6,755. However, October 2003 had a larger number employed than in October 2002 when the number employed was reported at 6,390.

Anchorage's unemployment rate fell from 5.2 percent to 4.9 percent in October, while Fairbanks' rate was unchanged at 5.7 percent and Juneau's rate was unchanged at 5.4 percent to 5.7 percent. The lowest recoreded rate in October was the Aleutians East Borough at 4.3 percent and the highest was the Wade Hampton Census Area at 21.6 percent.

October estimates of wage and salary employment show a decline of 11,700 jobs statewide in October. The biggest losses were in industries related to the summer visitor season and in manufacturing and construction. The October job count is 3,900 higher than in October 2002 for a modest over-the-year growth rate of 1.3 percent.

The Anchorage/Mat-Su region accounts for the dominant share of the state's wage and salary job growth. Estimates show growth of less that a eprcent for both the Interior region, where Fairbanks carries most of the weight, and the Southeast region, where Juneau leads the way. The Southwest region has added about 400 jobs since last October, most of them in health.

The Gulf Coast region, made up of the Kenai Peninsula, Kodiak, and the Valdea-Cordova Census Area, has lost approximatley 100 jobs over the last twelve months. Lower employment numbers from the North Slope oil fields are the primary cause of a 2.5 percent decline in employment in the Northern region.




Source of News Release & Graphics:

Alaska Department of Labor & Workforce Development
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