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Media contact: Jamie Swift, communications manager, 360-902-0904

OLYMPIA – Washington’s unemployment rate dipped from 9.3 percent in December to 9.1 percent in January, backed by the strongest month of job growth in more than three years.

The state added an estimated 11,000 jobs in January on a seasonally adjusted basis. It’s the largest monthly gain since November 2007, the month before the national recession began.

“It’s unusual to have job gains in the middle of winter, so this is another positive sign that the recovery is under way,” said Employment Security Commissioner Paul Trause.

Industries that added jobs in January were professional and business services, up 5,600; education and health services, up 4,500; retail trade, up 1,500; leisure and hospitality, up 1,300; financial activities, up 1,200; transportation, warehousing and utilities, up 800; and mining and logging, up 100.

Jobs were lost in construction, down 1,500; manufacturing, down 700; information, down 600; government, down 600; other services, down 500; and wholesale trade, down 100.

Since the beginning of 2010, Washington has added an estimated 20,500 jobs.

An estimated 338,905 people (not seasonally adjusted) in Washington were unemployed and looking for work, and 245,225 people received unemployment benefits from Washington in December.

Employment Security is a partner in the statewide WorkSource system, which offers a variety of employment and training services for job seekers, including free help with interviewing skills, résumés and job referrals. WorkSource also can help employers recruit and screen for qualified workers, apply for employment tax breaks and qualify for subsidized employee training.

Locations of local WorkSource offices are listed online at www.go2worksource.com.  Assistance also is available by phone at 877-872-5627. 

In addition, more than 16,000 job openings are posted online at www.go2worksource.com.


Broadcast version

Washington’s unemployment rate fell from nine-point-three percent in December to nine-point-one percent in January. 

The state also added an estimated eleven-thousand jobs – which was the biggest gain in more than three years.

Professional and business services, as well as education and health services, had the sharpest gains in January.  On the negative side, construction, manufacturing and government continued to lose jobs. 

Washington has added more than twenty-thousand jobs since January of 2010.