A few new details on Washington's 2013 labor force

Posted by DAVE GALLAGHER on April 4, 2014 

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics released data focusing on Washington state unemployment. This study focuses on labor underutilization, which is hard to measure for the monthly reports typically released. This gives an idea of how many people are unemployed as well as those forced to work in part-time positions while looking for full-time work.

Here are a few interesting notes taken from the study. The full report can be found at this (link):

-- In 2013, the broadest measure of labor underutilization, designated U-6 (includes the unemployed, workers employed part-time for economic reasons, and the marginally attached to the labor force), was 14 percent in Washington, compared to the U.S. average of 13.8 percent.

-- Washington had 240,700 unemployed residents in 2013, and another 200,000 were employed part time for economic reasons.

-- 49,900 Washingtonians were marginally attached to the labor force in 2013. Marginally attached individuals would like a job and have looked for work during the past 12 months, but had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey and are therefore not counted as unemployed in the official unemployment rate.

-- 11,700 discouraged workers (a subset of the marginally attached) did not look for work during the 4 weeks preceding the survey because they believed no jobs were available for them.

-- From 2012 to 2013, all six rates of labor underutilization improved in Washington.

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