State’s jobless rate hits lowest mark since 1976

From staff reports

Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate in April decreased one-tenth of a percentage point to a record low 3.8 percent in April – the lowest rate since 1976, according to a news release from the state Department of Labor & Industry.

The national rate was down two-tenths of a percentage point from March to 3.6 percent.

The Pennsylvania unemployment rate declined by one-half of a percentage point from April 2018.

The civilian labor force, the estimated number of Pennsylvania residents working or looking for work, declined for the first time in 2019. The Department of Labor & Industry attributes that to a large drop in the number of unemployed residents, which reached its lowest level in 18 years. Unemployment rested at 248,000 in April – only 4,000 above its record low. The number of employed Pennsylvanians rose by 3,000 to a record high of 6,222,000.

The estimated number of jobs in Pennsylvania, referred to as total non-farm jobs, was up 9,400 from March to a record high of 6,056,100.

Highlights of the jobs report include:

– Fifth consecutive gain as well as fifth consecutive record high.

– Total non-farm jobs increased over the month in eight of the 11 industry super-sectors.

– The largest volume change was in professional and business services, up 4,700.

– Professional and business services, education and health services, and leisure and hospitality all rose to record high job levels.

Over the past 12 months, jobs increased by 58,300 in the commonwealth with gains in nine of the 11 super-sectors. Education and health services had the largest volume 12-month gain.