Wenatchee Area Unemployment Drops To September Record Low
The jobless rate in September for job seekers in the Wenatchee Labor Market dipped slightly from August and the 3.2 percent unemployment rate is the lowest reading for the month of September since the state began recording county-level unemployment data electronically in 1990.
Regional Labor Economist Don Meseck reported the Wenatchee area economy has lost 300 jobs from September 2022 and is a second consecutive month. Meseck says that is a trend to watch in the future. There were an estimated 48, 400 jobs this September and Meseck described the -0.6 percent year-over-year loss between Septembers as relatively small.
Meseck also tracked the Wenatchee labor force, defined as those actively seeking employment and reports the local labor force had expanded for 11 straight months before decreasing in the past four months. In September 2023, there were 1,858 fewer Chelan or Douglas County residents seeking a job, compared to one year ago.
The year-over-year decrease in the number of unemployed more than offset the contraction in Wenatchee's labor force and pushed the unemployment rate down in September 2023
Meseck attributes some of the loss of the labor force to baby boomer retirements during the COVID-19 pandemic and are not returning to the work force.
Don Meseck is the regional labor economist for the Washington Department of Employment Security and compiles monthly labor market reports for Chelan and Douglas County. Read the full report at https://esd.wa.gov/labormarketinfo