Washington Unemployment Drops, But Economic Weakness Still Seen

Dec 18, 2013

The unemployment rate in Washington dropped a notch in November. New numbers released by the state Wednesday peg the jobless rate at 6.8 percent — down from a flat 7 percent the previous month.

State labor economist Paul Turek says the number of new jobs created last month fell short of his expectations. He says the weakness in the local manufacturing, housing and government sectors may just be temporary.

"If one can be optimistic at the national level, and I think there is a good case for that, then there is reason to believe we will follow that in the future,” Turek said.

On Tuesday, Oregon reported its lowest unemployment rate in five years. But the state's current jobless rate of 7.3 percent is still half a percentage point higher than Washington's.