Alaska job losses continue as recession enters third year

May employment down 2,000 from last year; 11,800 from May 2015

  • The Alaska Department of Labor building is seen in 2015. (Juneau Empire file)

Alaska’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped a statistically insignificant 0.1 percent between April and May, according to preliminary figures from the Alaska Department of Labor, and job losses are continuing as a statewide recession enters its third year.

Alaska’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 7.2 percent in May, a slight improvement from 7.3 percent. The comparable national rate is 3.8 percent, the lowest it has been since the late 1960s.

Karinne Wiebold, an economist with the Department of Labor (which produces the monthly unemployment report), said the decline “is not statistically significant and is preliminary, so it may be revised.”

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