State jobless rate still at 7.5%

OLYMPIA — Washington gained 4,000 jobs in February and unemployment rate remained unchanged at 7.5 percent, new numbers released Wednesday show.

Economists with the state Employment Security Department said that overall, the state has added about 65,000 jobs over the past year, regaining about 70 percent of the more than 200,000 jobs lost during the recession.

“February was relatively uneventful,” department economist Anneliese Vance-Sherman said in a news release. “The job growth was close to the monthly average for the past year, with no big surprises.”

The unemployment rate in Washington state in February 2012 was 8.4 percent.

Industries that saw the most growth included education and health services, up 3,000 jobs, manufacturing, up 2,900 and professional and business services, which gained 1,200 jobs.

Construction saw a loss of 3,600 jobs, leisure and hospitality, was down 1,100 and transportation, warehousing and utilities lost 400.

Earlier this month, state economists reported that new numbers showed the state gained 24,100 jobs for the month of January, a number they expected would later be revised down. But Wednesday’s report revised that number up to 24,200 jobs.

The national unemployment rate for February was 7.7 percent.

An estimated 259,100 people in Washington were unemployed and looking for work in February, including nearly 140,000 who claimed unemployment benefits.

More than 3,300 unemployed workers ran out of unemployment benefits last month. A total of 132,165 people have exhausted their benefits since extended benefits were activated in July 2008.

More in Herald Business Journal

Teddy, an English bulldog, models Zentek Clothing’s heat regulating dog jacket. (Ian Terry / The Herald)
Everett clothing company keeps your dog cool and stylish

Zentek uses space-age fabrics to moderate the temperature of pets and now humans.

Everett engineers learn lessons from Mexico City catastrophe

Structural scientists went to help after the September earthquake there and studied the damage.

Boeing raises dividend 20%, continues stock buyback program

The manufacturer said it has repurchased $9.2 billion worth of its shares this year.

Canada’s fighter jets will have to be good for its economy

The new stipulation could impact Boeing if its trade dispute with Bombardier is still alive.

Providence Hospital in Everett at sunset Monday night. Officials Providence St. Joseph Health Ascension Health reportedly are discussing a merger that would create a chain of hospitals, including Providence Regional Medical Center Everett, plus clinics and medical care centers in 26 states spanning both coasts. (Kevin Clark / The Daily Herald)
Merger would make Providence part of health care behemoth

Providence St. Joseph Health and Ascension Health are said to be talking. Swedish would also be affected.

Hospital companies merge as insurers encroach on their turf

An anticipated deal between Providence St. Joseph Health and Ascension is only the latest.

DaVita to sell off medical groups including The Everett Clinic

Another round of health care consolidation means The Everett Clinic could soon get new ownership.

Engine trouble hits Air New Zealand’s 787 Dreamliners

A Rolls-Royce engine was shut down and was afterward found to be seriously damaged.

Ex-Facebook VP: Social media is destroying society

“In the back, deep, deep recesses of our minds, we kind of knew something bad could happen.”

Most Read