Erie Vital Signs

Employment, Unemployment & Labor Force: Annual Employment, Unemployment & Labor Force

Recent Performance

This trend is mixed or inconclusive. Employment and the size of the labor force have fallen since 2008, but employment has stabilized somewhat.

As of 2014, the number of Erie residents employed stood at 126,112. This was less than the average number of employed individuals (189,232) in to the thirteen Erie Vital Signs peer areas.

The total number of unemployed residents in Erie county in 2014 was 8,231. The number of unemployed in the thirteen Erie Vital Signs peer areas in 2014 was, on average, 11,667.

The size of Erie’s labor force (the sum of employed and unemployed) in 2014 was 134,343. The size of the labor force in the thirteen Erie Vital Signs peer areas in 2014 was, on average, 200,899

The Basics

Annual employment, unemployment, and labor force refer to the total number of individuals employed, unemployed, and in the labor force, respectively, in a given year. Employed persons are those who did any work at all for pay or profit. Unemployed individuals are those who are not working but actively looking for a job. (Individuals who are on layoff but expecting recall need not be looking for work to be counted as unemployed.) The labor force includes individuals who are employed as well as those who are unemployed.

Why It's Important

It is important to monitor the level of employment and the size of the labor force because labor is one of the most important resources used by the economy to produce goods and services and thereby generate income and purchasing power. It is also important to monitor unemployment, which can produce economic losses. Unemployed workers suffer income loss, which results in lower consumption and possible negative health and other social consequences. Unemployment also leads to economic losses for the economy as a whole since more goods and services could have been produced by those unemployed.




The Details

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) provides annual data on the levels of employment and unemployment and the size of the civilian labor force for the national economy. The BLS also works cooperatively with state government agencies such as the Center for Workforce Information & Analysis of the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry to provide state and local data through the Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) and Current Employment Statistics (CES) programs.

Civilian labor force data include estimates of the number of individuals in the labor force (individuals aged 16 and above who are working or looking for work), the number employed, the number unemployed, and the unemployment rate. The statistics come from several sources, including the Current Population Survey (CPS), a sample survey of households that is conducted for the BLS by the U.S. Census Bureau; the Current Employment Statistics (CES) survey; and state unemployment insurance claims data.

Labor Force Definitions:
The labor force: includes both the employed and unemployed (who are actively seeking work).

Employed persons: those who did any work at all for pay or profit in the survey reference week (the week including the 12th of the month) or worked 15 hours or more without pay in a family business or farm, plus those not working who have a job from which they were temporarily absent, whether or not paid, for such reasons as labor-management dispute, illness, or vacation.

Unemployed persons: those who did not work at all in the reference week, have actively looked for a job sometime in the 4-week period ending with the survey reference week, and are currently available for work. Note: persons on layoff expecting recall need not be looking for work to be counted as unemployed.

Annual employment, unemployment, and labor force: the total number of individuals employed, unemployed, and in the labor force, respectively, in a given year.

The Nitty-Gritty Details

Subcategories

This EVS indicator has no subcategories. The BLS does provide (monthly) data at the national level for subcategories based on sex, age, education, race, and other selected characteristics.

Peer Areas

These variables include data on all 13 of the standard peer areas, along with U.S. and PA data.

Frequency

Annual

Source

Other Related Data

Latest Erie Data from the Economic Research Institute of Erie, at the Black School of Business at Penn State Behrend

Additional Studies and Research

Alan S. Blinder, “The Challenge of High Unemployment,” American Economic Review, May 1988, pp. 1-15.

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