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Hampton Roads Employment Figures Remain Weak

Hampton Roads Employment Figures Remain Weak

By Greg Grootendorst
Chief Economist

The Bureau of Labor Statistics released its metropolitan employment and unemployment statistics for April, revealing that 64% of the 372 metro areas realized increases in year-over-year payroll employment.  The experience in metro areas ranged from substantial increases (83 new jobs in Dallas, TX and 13.8% increase in Sandusky, OH) to substantial declines (16 fewer jobs in Riverside-San Bernardino, CA and a 4.2% decrease in Missoula, MT).  Hampton Roads recorded payroll employment decreased 0.2% on a year-over-year basis and is down over 46 jobs from the pre-recession peak in July of 2007.

Unemployment rates decreased on a year-over-year basis for 80% of metropolitan areas.  Regional unemployment rates for larger metro areas ranged from a high of 13.4% in San Bernardino, CA to a low of 4.5% in Oklahoma City.  Hampton Roads’ unemployment rate was 6.5% in April, down from 7.1% in April of 2010.  On a seasonally adjusted basis, Hampton Roads unemployment rate for April was 6.8%, remaining virtually unchanged from the previous two months.  The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in April for Virginia was 6.1% and 9.0% for the nation.