Monday, May 22, 2017
In March, Allegheny and Butler Counties had the lowest unemployment rates in the Pittsburgh, Pa. Metropolitan Statistical Area, at 5.0 percent each, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Sheila Watkins, the Bureau’s regional commissioner, noted that all seven Pittsburgh-area counties had jobless rates higher than the 4.6 percent U.S. average. Fayette County had the area’s highest unemployment rate at 7.9 percent, followed by Armstrong County at 7.0 percent. (See chart 1 and chart 2. The Technical Note at the end of this release contains the metropolitan area definition. All data in this release are not seasonally adjusted; accordingly, over-the-year analysis is used throughout.)
In March 2017, all seven Pittsburgh-area counties had over-the-year unemployment rate decreases. (See table A.) The largest rate decrease was in Armstrong County at 1.5 percentage points, followed by Fayette and Washington at 1.1 percentage points each. The remaining four counties in the area had decreases of 0.5 or 0.9 percentage point from March 2016 to March 2017. Nationally, the unemployment rate declined 0.5 percentage point from March a year ago.
|Unemployment rates||Change from|
Pittsburgh, Pa. Metropolitan Statistical Area
Allegheny County, Pa.
Armstrong County, Pa.
Beaver County, Pa.
Butler County, Pa.
Fayette County, Pa.
Washington County, Pa.
Westmoreland County, Pa.
From March 2015 to March 2017, six of the Pittsburgh-area counties had unemployment rate decreases. Butler County remained unchanged. The largest rate decrease was in Beaver County at 0.5 percentage point. Each of the five remaining counties in the area had a decrease of either 0.1 or 0.2 percentage point from March 2015 to March 2017. Nationally, the unemployment rate declined 1.0 percentage point during the two-year period.
The Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment news release for April is scheduled to be released on Wednesday, May 31, 2017, at 10:00 a.m. (EDT).
This release presents unemployment rate data for states and counties from the Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program, a federal-state cooperative endeavor.
Definitions. The labor force and unemployment data are based on the same concepts and definitions as those used for the official national estimates obtained from the Current Population Survey (CPS), a sample survey of households that is conducted for the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) by the U.S. Census Bureau. The LAUS program measures employment and unemployment on a place-of-residence basis. The universe for each is the civilian noninstitutional population 16 years of age and over. Employed persons are those who did any work at all for pay or profit in the reference week (the week including the 12th of the month) or worked 15 hours or more without pay in a family business or farm, plus those not working who had a job from which they were temporarily absent, whether or not paid, for such reasons as labor-management dispute, illness, or vacation. Unemployed persons are those who were not employed during the reference week (based on the definition above), had actively looked for a job sometime in the 4-week period ending with the reference week, and were currently available for work; persons on layoff expecting recall need not be looking for work to be counted as unemployed. The labor force is the sum of employed and unemployed persons. The unemployment rate is the number of unemployed as a percent of the labor force.
Methods of Estimation. The LAUS program is a hierarchy of non-survey methodologies for indirectly estimating employment and unemployment in states and local areas. Statewide data are produced through a modeling technique that uses estimates of payroll jobs from the Current Employment Statistics survey and unemployment insurance claims counts from the state workforce agencies to mitigate volatility in the direct CPS tabulations of employment and unemployment, respectively. Data for labor market areas, such as metropolitan areas and metropolitan divisions, are produced through a building block approach and adjusted proportionally to state model-based totals. Data for counties within labor market areas are produced through a disaggregation technique. A detailed description of the LAUS estimation procedures is available in chapter 4 of the BLS Handbook of Methods at https://www.bls.gov/opub/hom/pdf/homch4.pdf.
Annual revisions. Labor force and unemployment data for prior years reflect adjustments made at the end of each year. The adjusted estimates reflect updated population data from the U.S. Census Bureau, any revisions in the other data sources, and model reestimation. All substate estimates are reestimated and adjusted to add to the revised model-based estimates for states.
Area definitions. The substate area data published in this release reflect the standards and definitions established by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, dated February 28, 2013. A detailed list of the geographic definitions is available at www.bls.gov/lau/lausmsa.htm.
The Pittsburgh, Pa. Metropolitan Statistical Area includes Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Washington, and Westmoreland counties in Pennsylvania.
Information in this release will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 691-5200; Federal Relay Service: (800) 877-8339.
Last Modified Date: Monday, May 22, 2017