Labor Department Report: Unemployment Drops in Putnam, Westchester and Dutchess
ALBANY, N.Y. – Statistics released by the New York State Department of Labor on Wednesday show that unemployment in the three counties in the Hudson Valley Reporter’s coverage area has dropped significantly since July of last year, especially in Putnam County, which has the fifth lowest rate in the state.
The Labor Department reported that Putnam County had an unemployment rate of 5.7 percent in July, down from the 7.2 percent reported for the same time last year. That’s a drop from 53,000 to 46,000 unemployed workers. Only four other counties had lower unemployment rates: Hamilton at 4.2 percent and Saratoga, Tompkins and Yates, all at 5.6 percent.
Both Dutchess and Westchester counties had similarly encouraging news. Dutchess’ unemployment rate dropped from 8.4 percent to 6.7 percent between July 2012 and July 2013 – a decrease from 12,400 unemployed workers to 9,900.
During that same period, Westchester’s unemployment numbers went from 7.7 percent to 6.2 percent. That’s a drop from 37,400 unemployed to 30,700.
The Labor Department said the state’s private-sector job count increased by 129,300 from July 2012 to July 2013. It said the figures in the current report are preliminary and subject to change. Statewide, the current unemployment rate is 7.5 percent, the report said.
The report named Bronx County as the county with the highest rate of unemployment, at 11.9 percent. After the Bronx, the counties with the highest unemployment are Kings County (9.6 percent), St. Lawrence County (9.3), Oswego County (9) and Montgomery County (8.7).
The Labor Department said the estimate of the number of unemployed included those who had no employment during the period, were available for work and had made specific efforts to find employment.
The figures were not seasonally adjusted, which means they don’t reflect seasonal influences such as holiday and summer hires. Therefore, the most valid comparisons with this type of data are year-to-year comparisons of the same month, for example, July 2012 versus July 2013.