Jobless rate up slightly for Clallam, Jefferson counties

North Olympic Peninsula unemployment was up slightly in February, a repeat from the previous month, state officials said.

Clallam County’s jobless rate went from a revised 7.9 percent in January to a preliminary 8.0 percent in February, the state Employment Security Department estimated Tuesday.

Jefferson County unemployment rose from 7.1 percent in January to 7.5 percent in February, Employment Security said.

Unemployment rates in both counties were lower in December than they were in January, at 6.3 percent in Jefferson County and 7.1 percent in Clallam County.

Clallam County had 25,385 working citizens and 2,194 who had actively sought work in February.

Jefferson County had 11,008 working residents and 887 job seekers last month.

A person is considered unemployed if he or she is available to work and has actively sought work in the past four weeks.

The statewide jobless rate remained at 4.7 percent in February and national unemployment held steady at 4.1 percent, according to Employment Security and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

State added jobs

The state added 8,700 jobs from January to February. It had gained 99,100 jobs since February 2017, including 89,500 private sector positions.

“Job growth remains strong,” Employment Security Labor Economist Paul Turek said in a news release.

“A growing labor force is supplying workers to meet labor demand while unemployment remains low.”

King County had the lowest unemployment in the state in February at 3.7 percent, followed by Snohomish (4.2 percent), Whitman (4.8 percent) and San Juan (4.9 percent) counties.

Ferry County had the highest unemployment at 16.8 percent, followed by Stevens (10.0 percent), Okanogan (9.8 percent) and Pend Oreille (9.7 percent) counties.

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Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56450, or at [email protected].

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