Alaska unemployment hits 7 percent in July, on the rise from June's number

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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) - The rate of unemployment in Alaska increased last month according to a new report from Alaska's Department of Labor & Workforce Development.

In a release issued Friday, the department said that the unemployment rate has increased to 7 percent. This constitutes an overall raise of two tenths of a percent from June. For context, the national rate by the same organization was 4.3 percent, much lower than that found in Alaska.

The department wrote in the statement that overall employment in July was down 7,500 jobs after being adjusted to the annual loss of seasonal workers, a regular factor for states which, like Alaska, have large seasonal industries for employment such as fishing and tourism.

The overall figure is derived after that calculation is made and those regularly lost seasonal jobs were filtered out.

The losses were not centralized to one main job type, but instead spread out across most industries in the state. Although, the department noted, “the deepest losses remain concentrated in industries closely tied to oil and gas.”

The department said that 1,500 jobs were lost in oil and gas careers, 1,200 jobs lost in construction, 1,000 jobs lost in business service, and 1,000 jobs lost in state government during the past calendar year.

The only increases came to local and federal government and health care industries. Local government includes public schools and tribal government, the department stated.

Job losses in Alaska also increased last month, to the previous figure of 6.8 percent.

[Alaska's unemployment rate is highest in the nation]

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