The Department of Labor and Workforce Development released the March unemployment rate early this morning. The rate for March was up slightly from February and stands at 6.5 percent. The national average remained steady at 5.5 percent.
The not -seasonally adjusted lowest and highest rates in the state remained the same with the Aleutians East Borough and Aleutians West Census Area being the lowest at 3.2 and 2.6 percent respectively; and Wade Hampton Census Area the highest at 26.6 percent.
As part of their monthly press release, the Department highlighted the job numbers of the different regions throughout Alaska for the 1st quarter of 2015.
- Anchorage’s retail trade was the biggest source of new jobs, while professional and business services had the largest losses. The lack of snow cut into winter recreation, which created weakness in the leisure and hospitality industry.
- Southeast jobs were lower than the same period last year due to the less-than-usual growth in construction and seafood processing.
- Southwest was also lower than last year even with the seasonal growth from winter fishing.
- The Gulf Coast saw gains in seafood processing, mining, and leisure and hospitality that balanced out the loss in health care and government jobs.
- The Interior, including Fairbanks, had a small loss in jobs, but health care in the region is growing.
- The Northern Region had an increase in jobs from the same period last year. Health care increased, as did local government.
For full employment statistics, visit www.laborstats.alaska.gov