|By Jane M. Von Bergen, The Philadelphia Inquirer|
|McClatchy-Tribune Information Services|
Even the rising unemployment rate, which ticked up by a tenth of a point to 6.2 percent, is an indicator of growth.
That's because to count as unemployed, a jobless person must actively be seeking work.
As employment prospects improve, some jobless people who had been sitting on the sidelines may reenter the labor market and start sending out resumes, but may not immediately find work.
Although the jobs report looks good, it brings scant comfort to the 6,500 casino workers soon to be laid off in
And, unlike people laid off two years ago at this time, the newly unemployed will only be able to collect six months of unemployment benefits, compared to more than a year's worth of help available earlier.
One in three people who lose their jobs remain unemployed after six months, the
Friday's report showed job growth in nearly every sector, although the education and health care sector — a key component of the
Nationally, the "eds and meds" sector as it is known added 17,000 jobs, with big boosts of 40,000 jobs in social services and ambulatory health care. But those gains were offset by losses of 14,300 jobs in hospitals and nursing homes.
"If there is any prolonged weakness in eds and meds, it's bad for our region," said
They are a "critical cog that holds our regional economy together," he said.
Sweet said the
"The Merck and casino layoffs are problematic," he said, "but I think the economy is big enough to absorb it."
Sweet said Friday's report showed excellent progress, adding that wage growth should improve as the job market tightens up.
According to the report, construction added 22,000 jobs and manufacturing grew by 28,000 jobs overall, although there were some losses in food manufacturing, printing and electrical equipment.
Retailing showed solid growth with 26,700 jobs, although there were 3,400 fewer jobs in sporting goods, hobby, book and music stores.
In finance, gains in securities and insurance were offset slightly by job loss in credit activities.
Government hiring was also up.
Even with the increase in hiring, unemployment remains high for African Americans at 11.4 percent. One in five teenagers, aged 16 to 19, who want work cannot find it. email@example.com
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