Division of Workforce Development and Adult Learning


Labor Force and Industry Developments - Maryland Monthly Labor Review - September 2008


Marylandís seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was little changed over-the-month, rising by 0.1 of a percentage point, from 4.5 percent in August to 4.6 percent in September according to Marylandís Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation. Marylandís unemployment rate continued to compare favorably against that of the nation which held steady at 6.1 percent over-the-month.

While, on the surface, labor market conditions were relatively low key during September, the market continued to tighten as evidenced by the number of jobseekers who opted to discontinue their search Ė a movement countering the trend of prior years.

During September, the number of jobs on Marylandís business payrolls fell by an estimated 1,000 jobs, a decline prompted primarily by reductions in the public sector and by further cuts in the manufacturing and construction industries. The impact of these reductions was, however, minimized by hiring in professional and business services and education and health services where a combined total of 2,600 jobs were added in September.

Despite Septemberís payroll performance, Marylandís economy has continued to generate jobs since last year. While the rate of job generation has slackened, nearly 29,000 jobs have been added to Marylandís market since last September, an upturn countering the national movement where losses of nearly 520,000 jobs have been reported over the past year.

Locally, the movements in non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rates were influenced by downsizing in seasonal employment and the withdrawal of summer workers from the job market. During September, unemployment rates across the state ranged from a low of 3.3 percent shared by Howard and Montgomery counties to a high of 7.1 percent reported for Baltimore City residents. The largest over-the-month unemployment movement occurred in Worcester County where seasonal reductions in Ocean Cityís tourism-related businesses contributed to rising unemployment.

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