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News / Business / Clark County Business

Clark County job gains carry on

Unemployment last month estimated to be 4.4 percent

By Sarah Wolf, Columbian staff writer
Published: September 26, 2022, 5:22pm

Clark County’s unemployment rate is more than a point below where it was in August 2021, according to an update from the Washington Employment Security Department.

This August unemployment was estimated to be at 4.4 percent; in August 2021, it was 5.7 percent.

There were an estimated 11,300 unemployed people in the county last month, down from 13,900 a year earlier. That is an 18 percent decrease.

Clark County continued adding jobs last month but the pace has slowed, according to the employment department.

“After two red-hot months, Clark County nonfarm employment continued its expansion at a slower pace in August, adding 200 jobs on a seasonally-adjusted basis,” wrote Scott Bailey, regional economist for the department. Unadjusted employment, in fact fell, by 900 jobs.

In total, there were 180,100 jobs in the county last month.

Employment in the accommodations and food services industry rose by 300 jobs, while the construction industry added 200 jobs. Overall, private sector payrolls were up by 700 jobs.

The last of the school summer layoffs meant 1,600 jobs were lost in the county’s public K-12 school districts.

The county has added 11,800 jobs since the onset of the pandemic in February of 2020. That 6.9 percent increase is still proving better than the increases at the national, state, Oregon, Seattle metro and Portland metro levels.

The state, as recently reported, 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.

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