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Hawaii jobless rate tumbles to 6.1% in August

By Star-Advertiser Staff

LAST UPDATED: 2:25 p.m. HST, Sep 20, 2012

Hawaii’s unemployment rate fell to 6.1 percent in August, the lowest level in 3 1/2 years, the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations reported today.

The August rate compared with a revised rate of 6.3 percent in July. The August rate equaled the previous low of  6.1 percent reached in January 2009.

While the number of unemployed fell in August there also was a drop in the overall labor force, suggesting some job seekers simply quit looking for work.

There were 38,900 unemployed in August, down from 40,850 in July. The total labor force fell to 640,250 from 644,100 during the same period.

Nationally, the unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent in August from 8.3 percent in July. The state and national numbers are adjusted for seasonal variations, such as teachers returning to the workforce after the summer break.

On an unadjusted basis the jobless rate fell in all Hawaii counties. It declined to 5.1 percent from 5.6 percent in Honolulu County, to 8.3 percent from 9.2 percent in Hawaii County, to 6.1 percent from 6.7 percent in Maui County and to 7 percent from 7.7 percent in Kauai County.

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