Wednesday, March 29, 2023
March 29, 2023

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Job report: Clark County fares better than state, Seattle

Business services, social assistance sectors see growth

By , Columbian staff writer
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Eight hundred jobs were added to Clark County’s local economy in July, according to seasonally adjusted statistics from Scott Bailey, regional economist for the Washington Employment Security Department.

Business services and social assistance sectors both saw growth that month. Business services added 300 jobs, while social assistance added 200. Gains have been seen in these categories this year, as well as in arts, entertainment and recreation; private education; accommodations and food services; and construction, mining and logging. Over the year, the retail trade and federal government sectors lost jobs.

Seasonal summer layoffs at schools meant a reduction of 300 jobs, meanwhile, in state government and K-12 education.

Since the onset on the pandemic in February 2020, Clark County has gained a net 11,400 jobs, a 6.7 percent increase. That is better than the national rate, the state rate, the Oregon rate, the Seattle metro rate and the Portland metro rate.

The county’s unemployment rate was 3.8 percent in July, down from 4.4 percent in June and down from 5.6 percent in July 2021. The number of unemployed residents in July was 9,600, which is 31 percent below the estimated 13,800 unemployed folks a year ago.

Washington, meanwhile, added about 16,100 jobs to its economy in August — a number that has been seasonally adjusted, according to the Washington Employment Security Department’s latest monthly labor report. Government, education, health services, professional and business services and retail trade were the industries with the biggest growth on the state level. The July preliminary estimate was also revised to show that the state actually gained 10,200 jobs that month.

Still, the state’s labor force declined in August, coming in at 4,020,700, down by 9,700 people from the month before. Washington’s unemployment rate sat at 3.7 percent in August, down from 5 percent one year ago.