Oklahoma City's unemployment rate increases slightly in December

Oklahoma City has the best rate in the nation for jobs for ninth consecutive month.
by Jennifer Palmer Published: January 31, 2013
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Oklahoma City retained its spot among the nation's largest cities as the metropolitan area with the lowest unemployment rate, a designation it has held for nine straight months.

Oklahoma City's jobless rate was 4.6 percent in December, up slightly from 4.5 percent in November.

However, an Oklahoma employment report shows job losses. Total nonfarm employment dipped to 599,200 compared to November, a loss of 1,600 jobs or 0.3 percent, according a report released Wednesday by the state Employment Security Commission.

Declines in industries

Certain industries showed significant declines. Construction jobs were down 2.9 percent, or 700 jobs, when comparing December to November, according to non-seasonally adjusted numbers. Administrative and support service jobs declined 3.1 percent, a loss of 1,300 jobs in the same time period.

Lynn Gray, chief economist for the Employment Security Commission, said the declines are typical for December and don't indicate a trend.

“I still would look at the long-term trend we've had over the last year of good economic growth,” he said.

November's total Oklahoma City metropolitan area employment was revised from 599,500 to 600,800 — an all-time high for the city and the first time surpassing the 600,000 mark, Gray added.


by Jennifer Palmer
Investigative Reporter
Jennifer Palmer joined The Oklahoman staff in 2008 and, after five years on the business desk, is now digging deeper through investigative work. She's been recognized with awards in public service reporting and personal column writing. Prior to...
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