Jobless rate falls again in Pierce and Thurston counties

Staff writerMay 20, 2014 

The jobless rate hit 6.5 percent in Pierce County and 5.7 percent in Thurston County last month, rates not seen since November 2008.

Pierce County's not-seasonally adjusted rate, though down from March's 7.7 percent, remained above the state average of 6.1 percent seasonally adjusted.  Thurston County's unemployment rate was below March's 6.8 percent and below the state average and the national average, which stood at 6.3 percent, according to figures from the Washington Department of Employment Security.

Pierce County's unemployment rate hit a recession high unemployment rate of 11.8 percent in February 2010.  Thurston's peaked at 9.6 percent that same month.

In April 2013, Pierce County's unemployment rate was 8 percent; Thurston County had a jobless rate of 6.9 percent that same month.

Both counties' performance trailed that of King County, which posted a 4.3 percent unemployment rate in April this year, the lowest rate in the state.

Grays Harbor County tied with Ferry County in the state's north central section for the state's highest unemployment at 9.9 percent in April. Lewis County, just south of Thurston County, had a 9.1 percent jobless rate.

Other Puget Sound area counties in April had jobless rates ranging from 7.8  percent in Mason County to 4.9 percent in Snohomish County. Kitsap County's unemployment rate in April was 5.5 percent; Skagit had a 6.6 percent rate. Whatcom County's rate was 5.8 percent.



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