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Unemployment rate up in River ParishesL’Observateur / July 1, 1998BATON ROUGE – Jobless rates in the River Parishes region increased slightly, while the statewide rate dropped.

Louisiana Secretary of Labor Garey Forster said there were 4,600 more nonagricultural jobs in May than in April and asserted, “The fact that non- agricultural jobs were up in almost all sectors, including manufacturing which has been hit by layoffs and fire damage at a large facility recently, is a reflection of the strength of our economy.”Statewide, the jobless rate went from 5.5 to 5.3 percent.In St. Charles Parish, joblessness went from 3.8 percent in April to 4.1percent in May. That still remains a full percentage point less than the 5.1percent rate in May 1997 and reflects an increase in the jobless total from 800 to 900.

In St. James Parish, unemployment climbed from 6.0 percent to 6.4percent during the same period. However, in May 1997, the rate stood at7.9 percent, well above the current rate. Jobless totals went from 500 to600.

In St. John the Baptist Parish, joblessness went from 4.9 to 5.2 percent,again, well below May 1997’s unemployment rate of 6.8 percent. Joblesstotals went from 900 to 1,000.

For the New Orleans statistical area, the rate stayed steady at 4.3percent, the area including Orleans, Jefferson, Plaquemines, St. Bernard,St. Charles, St. James, St. John the Baptist and St. Tammany parishes.Lincoln Parish continued to lead the state with a preliminary May unemployment rate of 2.3 percent. On the upper end of the scale, Concordiaand West Carroll parishes suffered with the state’s highest jobless rate of 12.9 percent, however, these were both improvements from April’stotals of 14.4 and 14.2 percent, respectively.Back to Top

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