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District of Columbia Unemployment Rate at 5.0 Percent in April

(Washington, DC) – The District of Columbia’s Department of Employment Services reported today that the seasonally adjusted preliminary unemployment rate was 5.0 percent in April 2023, an increase of 0.2 percentage points from the revised March 2023 rate of 4.8 percent.

The District’s preliminary April job estimates show an increase of 1,100 jobs, for a total of 770,400 jobs in the District. The private sector increased by 1,100 jobs.  The public sector remained the same.  The numbers are drawn from the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) through its monthly survey of the District of Columbia’s employers.

“While measured, we are encouraged by the addition of jobs to the District economy,” said DOES Director Dr. Unique Morris-Hughes. “DC’s comeback is underway, tourism has returned to pre-pandemic levels, and our focus remains on providing the training, resources, and access to supports District residents and employers need to advance and thrive.”

The number of employed District residents decreased by 200 from 371,600 in March 2023 to 371,400 in April 2023. The civilian labor force for the District increased by 300 from 390,500 in March 2023 to 390,800 in April 2023. The labor force participation rate was unchanged from 70.6 percent in March 2023 to 70.6 percent in April 2023.

Employment Overview

  • Manufacturing sector remained the same, after remaining the same in the prior month.  With employment at 1,000 jobs, jobs have remained the same from a year ago.
  • Mining, Logging and Construction sector increased by 400 jobs, after increasing by 500 jobs in the prior month. With employment at 15,600 jobs, jobs increased by 300 or 1.96 percent from a year ago.
  • Trade, Transportation, and Utilities sector decreased by 300 jobs, after decreasing by 300 in the prior month.  With employment at 29,900 jobs, jobs decreased by 100 or .33 percent from a year ago.  
  • Information sector remained the same, after remaining the same in the prior month, With employment at 20,900 jobs, jobs increased by 100 jobs or .48 percent from a year ago.
  • Financial Activities sector decreased by 100 jobs, after increasing by 700 jobs in the prior month.  With employment at 28,200 jobs, jobs increased by 1,000 or 3.68 percent from a year ago.
  • Professional and Business Services sector decreased by 400 jobs, after an increase of 500 jobs in the prior month.  With employment at 173,300 jobs, jobs increased by 700 or .41 percent from a year ago.
  • Educational and Health Services sector decreased by 1,100 jobs, after remaining the same in the prior month. With employment at 123,700 jobs, jobs increased by 300 or .24 percent from a year ago.
  • Leisure and Hospitality sector increased by 1,300 jobs, after an increase of 2,700 jobs in the prior month.  With employment at 75,500 jobs, jobs increased by 8,900 or 13.36 percent from a year ago.
  • Other Services sector increased by 1,300 jobs, after an increase of 200 jobs in the prior month.  With employment at 69,300 jobs, jobs increased by 2,900 or 4.37 percent from a year ago.

 
Labor Force Overview

  • The number of employed District residents decreased by 200 over the month to 371,400. The civilian labor force increased by 300 to 390,800.
  • One year ago, total employment was 370,300 and the civilian labor force was 389,300.

          The number of unemployed was 19,000, and the unemployment rate was 4.9 percent.

NOTES: The April 2023 final and May 2023 preliminary unemployment rates will be released on Friday June 16, 2023. Historical jobs and labor force estimates for the District of Columbia and detailed labor market information is available HERE.

Technical Notes: Estimates of industry employment and unemployment levels are determined through the use of two different monthly surveys.

Industry employment data is derived from the Current Employment Statistics (CES) survey, a monthly survey of business establishments conducted by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) of the US Department of Labor, which provides estimates of employment, hours, and earnings data broken down by industry for the nation as a whole, all states, and most major metropolitan areas (often referred to as the “establishment” survey).

Resident employment and unemployment data are mainly derived from the District’s portion of the national Current Population Survey (CPS), a household survey conducted each month by the US Census Bureau under contract with BLS, which provides input to the Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program (often referred to as the “household” survey).

Both industry and household estimates are revised each month based on additional information from updated survey reports compiled by BLS. In addition, these estimates are benchmarked (revised) annually based on actual counts from the District’s Unemployment Compensation Law administrative records and other data.


Data reflects 2022 annual benchmark revisions.
Industry employment data is not seasonally adjusted.