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Hawaii jobless rate unchanged at 5.2% in Feb. from Jan.

By Star-Advertiser Staff

LAST UPDATED: 1:56 p.m. HST, Mar 28, 2013

Hawaii’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was unchanged at 5.2 percent in February from January, the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations reported today.

Although unemployment rate was flat the underlying labor force data suggest there was a slight deterioration in the labor market in February.

The number of unemployed who were looking for work rose to 33,750 in February, an increase of 50 from January. The number of employed, meanwhile, fell by 1,000 to 617,250.  The result was a net decline in the overall labor force, which is a combination the two categories of workers.

Hawaii’s 5.2 percent February unemployment rate compared to a 7.7 percent rate nationally.

The statewide and national data are adjusted for seasonal variations, such as the hiring of temporary workers for the holiday shopping season.

County data are not seasonally adjusted. The unemployment rate fell to 4.5 percent from 4.8 percent for Honolulu County, to 7.2 percent from 7.5 percent for Hawaii County, to 6.4 percent from 6.5 percent for Kauai County, and to 5.6 percent from 5.7 percent for Maui County.

The labor force data are derived largely from a telephone survey of households. A separate survey of  businesses showed that the number of nonfarm payroll jobs  fell to 608,700 in February, down a net 2,500 from January. However, the number of payroll jobs in February was up 9,100 from the same month a year earlier.

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