Metropolitan Area Employment and Unemployment Summary

For release 10:00 a.m. (EDT) Wednesday, April 8, 2015                     USDL-15-0563

Technical information:
 Employment:    (202) 691-6559    sminfo@bls.gov    www.bls.gov/sae
 Unemployment:  (202) 691-6392    lausinfo@bls.gov    www.bls.gov/lau
 
Media contact:  (202) 691-5902    PressOffice@bls.gov


        METROPOLITAN AREA EMPLOYMENT AND UNEMPLOYMENT -- FEBRUARY 2015


Unemployment rates were lower in February than a year earlier in 366 of the 387 
metropolitan areas, higher in 18 areas, and unchanged in 3 areas, the U.S. Bureau of 
Labor Statistics reported today. Three areas had jobless rates of less than 3.0 percent 
and 16 areas had rates of at least 10.0 percent. Nonfarm payroll employment increased 
over the year in 355 metropolitan areas, decreased in 29 areas, and was unchanged in 
3 areas. The national unemployment rate in February was 5.8 percent, not seasonally 
adjusted, down from 7.0 percent a year earlier.

Metropolitan Area Unemployment (Not Seasonally Adjusted)

Lincoln, Neb., had the lowest unemployment rate in February, 2.4 percent, followed by 
Ames, Iowa, 2.7 percent, and Midland, Texas, 2.8 percent. El Centro, Calif., and Yuma, 
Ariz., had the highest unemployment rates, 20.0 percent and 19.4 percent, respectively. 
A total of 199 areas had February unemployment rates below the U.S. figure of 5.8 
percent, 172 areas had rates above it, and 16 areas had rates equal to that of the 
nation. (See table 1.)

Decatur, Ill., had the largest over-the-year unemployment rate decrease in February 
(-3.8 percentage points), followed by Danville, Ill. (-3.7 points). Fifty-five other 
areas had rate decreases of at least 2.0 percentage points. Lafayette, La., had the 
largest over-the-year jobless rate increase (+1.4 percentage points).

Of the 51 metropolitan areas with a 2010 Census population of 1 million or more, 
Austin-Round Rock, Texas, had the lowest unemployment rate in February, 3.4 percent, 
followed by Oklahoma City, Okla., 3.6 percent. Las Vegas-Henderson-Paradise, Nev., had 
the highest jobless rate among the large areas, 7.2 percent. Fifty of the large areas 
had over-the-year unemployment rate decreases, the largest of which occurred in 
Detroit-Warren-Dearborn, Mich. (-3.2 percentage points). New Orleans-Metairie, La., 
had the only over-the-year unemployment rate increase (+0.9 percentage point).

Metropolitan Division Unemployment (Not Seasonally Adjusted)

Eleven of the most populous metropolitan areas are made up of 38 metropolitan divisions, 
which are essentially separately identifiable employment centers. In February, San 
Francisco-Redwood City-South San Francisco, Calif., and San Rafael, Calif., had the 
lowest unemployment rates among the divisions, 3.7 percent each. Gary, Ind., had the 
highest division rate, 8.3 percent. (See table 2.)

All 38 metropolitan divisions had over-the-year unemployment rate decreases in February. 
The largest of the declines occurred in Detroit-Dearborn-Livonia, Mich. (-3.6 percentage 
points), and Warren-Troy-Farmington Hills, Mich. (-2.9 points).

Metropolitan Area Nonfarm Employment (Not Seasonally Adjusted)

In February, 355 metropolitan areas had over-the-year increases in nonfarm payroll 
employment, 29 had decreases, and 3 had no change. The largest over-the-year employment 
increases occurred in New York-Newark-Jersey City, N.Y.-N.J.-Pa. (+162,300), Los 
Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, Calif. (+152,400), and Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, Texas 
(+132,400). The largest over-the-year percentage gain in employment occurred in Midland, 
Texas (+8.8 percent), followed by Ocean City, N.J. (+8.6 percent), and Lake Charles, La. 
(+8.5 percent). (See table 3.)

The largest over-the-year decreases in employment occurred in Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, 
Miss. (-2,600), Atlantic City-Hammonton, N.J. (-1,300), and Duluth, Minn.-Wis. (-1,000). 
The largest over-the-year percentage decreases in employment occurred in Great Falls, 
Mont. (-2.3 percent), Gulfport-Biloxi-Pascagoula, Miss. (-1.7 percent), and 
Florence-Muscle Shoals, Ala. (-1.4 percent). 

Over the year, nonfarm employment rose in all of the 51 metropolitan areas with a 2010 
Census population of 1 million or more. The largest over-the-year percentage increase in 
employment in these large metropolitan areas occurred in San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, 
Calif. (+5.4 percent), followed by Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Roswell, Ga., and 
Louisville/Jefferson County, Ky.-Ind. (+4.6 percent each). 

Metropolitan Division Nonfarm Employment (Not Seasonally Adjusted)

In February 2015, all of the 38 metropolitan divisions had over-the-year gains in nonfarm 
payroll employment. The largest over-the-year increase in employment among the metropolitan 
divisions occurred in New York-Jersey City-White Plains, N.Y.-N.J. (+132,600), followed 
by Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, Calif. (+101,100), and Dallas-Plano-Irving, Texas 
(+100,200). (See table 4.)

The largest over-the-year percentage increase in employment among the metropolitan 
divisions occurred in San Francisco-Redwood City-South San Francisco, Calif. (+4.6 percent), 
followed by Dallas-Plano-Irving, Texas (+4.5 percent), and Fort Lauderdale-Pompano 
Beach-Deerfield Beach, Fla. (+4.2 percent). 

_____________
The Regional and State Employment and Unemployment news release for March 2015 is 
scheduled to be released on Tuesday, April 21, 2015, at 10:00 a.m. (EDT). The Metropolitan 
Area Employment and Unemployment news release for March 2015 is scheduled to be released 
on Wednesday, April 29, 2015, at 10:00 a.m. (EDT).


   __________________________________________________________________________________________
  |                                                                                          |
  |                  Current Employment Statistics (CES) Data Corrections                    |
  |                                                                                          |
  | This news release contains corrections to previously released employment data in table 3.|
  | A complete list of corrections in this news release and in the CES (State and Area)      |
  | database can be found at www.bls.gov/bls/errata/sae_errata.htm.                          |
  |__________________________________________________________________________________________|



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Last Modified Date: April 08, 2015