Unemployment rates dropped in December

CHARLESTON – The unemployment rate dropped to 5.9 percent in December in West Virginia, according to the seasonally adjusted numbers, WorkForce West Virginia said on Thursday.

The number of unemployed state residents fell 1,300 in December to 46,700. Unemployment was down 13,500 over the year.

The national unemployment rate decreased three-tenths of a percentage point to 6.7 in December.

Total nonfarm payroll employment decreased 2,200 in December, with losses of 1,800 in the goods-producing sector and 400 in the service-providing sector.

Within the goods-producing sector, mining and logging added 500 jobs, while construction lost 1,800 jobs and manufacturing declined 500 over the month. Within the service-providing sector, employment gains included 600 in trade, transportation, and utilities and 200 in financial activities. Employment declines included 200 in professional and business services, 300 in educational and health services, 300 in leisure and hospitality, 300 in other services, and 100 in government. Employment in information was unchanged.

Since December 2012, total nonfarm payroll employment has added 7,700 jobs, with gains of 4,500 in the service-providing sector and 3,200 in the goodsproducing sector. Employment gains included 4,100 in mining and logging, 1,200 in trade, transportation, and utilities, 100 in information, 600 in financial activities, 1,700 in professional and business services, 1,500 in educational and health services, and 900 in government. Employment declines included 400 in construction, 500 in manufacturing, 800 in leisure and hospitality, and 700 in other services.