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Honolulu 5.4% July jobless rate tied for nation's 15th lowest

By Star-Advertiser Staff

LAST UPDATED: 1:42 p.m. HST, Aug 31, 2011

Honolulu’s unemployment rate fell to 5.4 percent in July from 5.7 percent in June, tying the city for the 15th lowest jobless rate out of 372 metropolitan areas surveyed, according to a federal report released today.

Honolulu was one of 193 metro areas where the unemployment rate dropped in July from June. The jobless rate rose in 118 metro areas and was unchanged in 61.

Metro unemployment rates are not adjusted for seasonal changes, such as an influx of people into the workforce at the end of the school year.

Honolulu’s July unadjusted jobless rate compared to rates of 9.5 percent for Hawaii County, 8.5 percent for Kauai County, and 7.5 percent for Maui County. The statewide unadjusted rate was 6.4 percent in July. When adjusted for seasonal factors it was 6.1 percent.

Honolulu was in a small group of states mostly in the Plains and the Northeast with unemployment rates below 6 percent in July. Bismark, N.D., has  the nation’s lowest unemployment rate at 3 percent in July.

El Centro, Calif., topped the list with an unemployment rate of 30.8 percent in July. According to the BLS cities in California accounted for 13 of the nation’s 15 highest unemployment rates in July.

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