August jobs data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates that Pennsylvania is continuing to see a decline in unemployment, but also continues to struggle with a declining overall labor force.
PA’s unemployment dipped below the five-percent mark last month, according to BLS estimates. But at least part of this is attributable to fewer workers, as the state’s total pool of workers dipped by another 22,000 residents over the past year.
The trend has been attributed to the state’s aging population retiring or looking for less intensive occupations, creating more opportunities for the unemployed but limiting growth overall.
The BLS also saw employment in core sectors – construction and manufacturing – record mixed results. Construction employment in August was up from July, as well as from August of last year. Manufacturing employment saw a slight bump from July to August this year, but was down overall from last year.