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Berks County’s jobless rate up slightly in August

Berks County’s unemployment rate was up two-tenths of a percentage point to 6.5% in August the state Department of Labor & Industry said Tuesday.

Over the year, the county’s rate was down 3.9%.

According to statistics, a decline of 1,100 seasonally adjusted jobs over the month by the leisure and hospitality industry contributed to the monthly rise. Overall, Berks saw the total number of nonfarm jobs decline by 0.4%, or 600, to 165,500 in August.

Over the year, jobs are up 0.2%, or 300, in the county. By comparison, jobs are up by 3.4% in the state.

The state’s unemployment rate for August was was down 0.1% to 6.4%, while the U.S. rate was down two-tenths of a point to 5.2%.

Berks had a seasonally adjusted labor force of 203,900, which was the same as August 2020, with employment of 190,700, an increase of 3,400. The number of unemployed was 13,200, a year-over-year decrease of 8,400.

Among the state’s 67 counties, Berks was tied with Lycoming and Washington for the 30th-lowest rate. Chester County had the lowest rate at 4.3% and Montgomery was tied with Perry for sixth at 5%. Schuylkill was tied with three other counties for 38th at 6.8%.

The Reading Metropolitan Statistical Area, which makes up the entirety of Berks, had the 12th-lowest rate among the state’s 18 MSAs. Gettysburg was the lowest at 4.4%, while East Stroudsburg was highest at 7.6%. The Lehigh Valley was 11th-lowest at 6.4%, Lancaster was second-lowest at 4.9% and the Philadelphia MSA was 13th at 6.7%.

Reading’s unemployment rate, not seasonally adjusted, was 11.8% for August, a month-over-month drop of eight-tenths of a point. The city’s labor force was was down by 700 to 33,400, while the number of employed was down by 300 to 29,400. The number of unemployed was also down by 300 to 4,000.

Among three suburban townships, Exeter had the lowest rate at 5.5%, an increase of one-tenth of a point over the month. Spring Township’s rate remained at 6.2% and Muhlenberg had a sixth-tenths of a point drop to 6.8%.

Pottstown’s jobless rate for August was 8.6%, a drop of two-tenths of a point.

 


Source: Berkshire mont

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