Area Unemployment Rose in February

The District, Maryland and Virginia continued shedding jobs at a rapid pace in February, according to government data released this morning, with D.C.'s unemployment rate rising to nearly 10 percent.

While a steady federal government workforce has largely shielded the area from massive private-sector job losses seen across the country, unemployment has continued to increase here. The District's unemployment rate rose to 9.9 percent, up from 9.2 percent in January, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

That far surpasses the national unemployment rate of 8.1 percent in February.

Maryland's unemployment rate reached 6.7 percent, up from 6.2 percent. And Virginia's jobless rate grew to 6.6 percent from 6 percent.

Louisiana is the only state experiencing gains in its workforce -- 800 new jobs were created there.

Michigan, which has seen heavy losses in the auto industry, has the highest unemployment rate -- 12 percent. Wyoming, with 3.9 percent, had the lowest.

Seven states now have unemployment rates that top 10 percent, up from four states in January.

By Terri Rupar  |  March 27, 2009; 12:21 PM ET  | Category:  Economy
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